MMI Foundational Courses: Sample Syllabi

Cultural Diversity: Relevance to Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology

Course Objectives

  • To become knowledgeable about the components of culture and ways in which cultures differ.
  • To develop a detailed understanding of one's own culture and the characteristics of the four major cultural groups in the United States.
  • To understand the effects of culture and gender on verbal and nonverbal communication.
  • To develop intercultural skills for assessing and counseling individuals.
  • To develop strong intercultural communication techniques and skills for working in a culturally diverse workplace.

Return to Top

Required Text

Lustig & Koester (1999). Intercultural competence. Addison Wesley Longman. 

Return to Top

Recommended Reading

Campbell, L.R. (1996). Issues in service delivery to African American children. In A.G. Kamhi, K.E. Pollock, & J.L. Harris (Eds.), Communication development and disorders in African American children (pp. 73-94). Baltimore, MD: Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.

Chen and Starosta. Intercultural Conflict Management in Foundations of Intercultural Communication

Crowe, T.A. (1997). Application of counseling in speech-language pathology and audiology. Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins.

Dolnick. (1993, September). Deafness as culture.  The Atlantic Monthly, 37.

Fadiman, A. (1997). The spirit catches you and you fall down: A Hmong child, her American doctors, and the collision of two cultures (pp 20- 36, 60- 66, 262- 266). New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux.

Goldberg, B. (1997). Tailoring to fit: Altering our approach to multicultural populations. Asha, 39, 22-28.


American Tongues

Cultural Diversity: A Model

Moore Tape

Providing Care to Hispanic Immigrant Children

Sound and Fury

The Challenge of Providing Health Care Services to American Indians

The Importance of Culture in Building Therapeutic Relations

The Perspectives of Minority Professionals

Return to Top

Class Outline

Class 1: Cultural Diversity: Facts and Implications

  • Chapter 1 - Lustig & Koester
  • Video - Cultural Diversity: A Model

Classs 2: Culture: Its Definition and Components

  • Chapters 2 & 4 - Lustig & Koester
  • Assignment: Paper - Culture and You

Class 3: Characteristics of Major Cultural Groups in the U.S.

  • Video - The Importance of Culture in Building Therapeutic Relationships

Class 4: Stereotyping and Prejudice

  • Chapter 6 - Lustig & Koester

Class 5: Culture and Communication: Verbal and Nonverbal

  • Chapters 5, 7 &  8 - Lustig & Koester
  • Video - American Tongues

Class 6:  Gender, Culture and Communication

Class 7: Culture and Disability

  • Reading - Fadiman

Class 8: Deaf Culture

  • Reading - Dolnick
  • Video - Sound and Fury

Class 9: Evaluation of Individuals from a Different Culture

  • Reading - Campbell

Class 10: Culture, Counseling, and Therapy

  • Reading - Crowe
  • Video - The Challenge of Providing Health Care Services to American Indians

Class 11: Cultural Conflict: How to Reduce It

  • Reading - Chen and Starosta
  • Video - Moore tape
  • Assignment - movie review

Class 12: Working in a Culturally Diverse Workplace

  • Chapter 12 - Lustig & Koester
  • Video - Working in a Diverse Workplace
  • Video - The Challenge of Providing Health Care Services to American Indians

Class 13: Culture Shock

Class 14: Technology and Culture

Return to Top


Movie Review (15 possible points):

Cultural differences and conflicts form the basis of many movies. View one of the following movies and write a 3-5 page paper explaining how cultural differences and/or conflicts formed the basis for the plot. Your paper should be typed and double-spaced. The logic and organization as well as quality of writing (grammar and spelling) will be evaluated.

  • Baby Boom
  • Driving Miss Daisy
  • Mr. Baseball
  • My Big Fat Greek Wedding
  • My Cousin Vinny
  • Philadelphia
  • Stand and Deliver
  • The Joy Luck Club

Paper: Culture and You (15 points)

All of us are shaped by the culture in which we were raised. Identify and discuss the cultural forces that have been powerful in your life. Your paper should be typed and double-spaced. The logic and organization as well as quality of writing (grammar and spelling) will be evaluated. 

Return to Top

ASHA Corporate Partners