Intercultural education and the building of global citizenship: Developing intercultural competence

Shin Ying CHAN

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Theses


Though living in an international city, studies show that Hong Kong Chinese have not been well prepared to be global citizens. There is the need to cultivate inclusive values and respect for diversity in Hong Kong. Literature suggests that intercultural education has the potential to develop intercultural competence relating to respect for diversity. Enhancing intercultural competence, in turn, is assumed to promote the growth of global citizenship. Intercultural competence, the ability to respect others across all kinds of diversities, is an essential characteristic of global citizens. Yet very little is known about the impact of intercultural learning on developing intercultural competence among the dominant cultural group in Hong Kong. The purpose of this study was to explore the effectiveness of an intercultural learning program on a sample of Hong Kong Chinese secondary school students. A mixed-method design was used to assess the effectiveness of an intercultural learning program intervention which was an adaptation from an intercultural sensitivity training program of a community center. The Intercultural Sensitivity Scale (ISS) was used to assess the impact of the intervention. A quasi experimental design with pre-test, post-test, experimental group (n=21) and control group (n=21) helped to ensure the reliability of the assessment. Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) was used to analyze the data. A parallel qualitative study was also conducted using participant observation during the intervention and focus group interviews to follow up the intervention. Thematic analysis was used to analyze the qualitative data. The results of this study highlighted the need for a greater focus on developing intercultural competence of the dominant cultural group in Hong Kong. Both the quantitative and qualitative results showed that the student samples were not well adjusted to Hong Kong’s multicultural nature and in particular to its ethnic minority groups. Implications are drawn for theory, policy and practice in relation to the role of schools in promoting a more tolerant society. This is accompanied with some reflection on the kind of interventions that may be needed in the future. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Education
Awarding Institution
  • The Education University of Hong Kong
  • KENNEDY, Kerry John 甘國臻, Supervisor
  • WONG, Ping Ho, Supervisor
Award date28 Sept 2016
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Intercultural education
  • World citizenship
  • Intercultural competence
  • Global citizenship
  • Respect for diversity
  • Theses and Dissertations
  • Thesis (Ed.D.)--The Education University of Hong Kong, 2016


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