Universidad de Alicante (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2009 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Pages: 6966-6974
ISBN: 978-84-613-2953-3
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2009
Location: Madrid, Spain
The aim of this paper is to present our research in progress as regards one of the two main areas of the project COMINTER-SIMULNEG (I+D HUM2006-12989), namely developing a teaching methodology for cultural awareness based on computer simulation of real business settings. Our methodological proposal for developing intercultural communicative competence in business settings consists of designing a particular type of video game—a graphic adventure—called “It’s a Deal!” This technological tool uses a simulated experience to provide the targeted users (Spanish business men and women in international trade) with the opportunity to become aware that each culture has its own rules of the game, as well as to discover which rules apply in British culture and practice using these rules. The didactic methodology of a graphic adventure belongs to the constructivist learning theory, since the student, motivated by the plot of the video game explores the reality that surrounds him, discovers the right social interaction and communication strategies to be used in each business situation, adds them to his bank of existing knowledge and assimilates them as the correct response that should be given to similar communication problems arising in real business life. In our case, students will be able to learn and acquire intercultural communicative competence in business settings through a three-stage process: (a) Sensitization, (b) Developing intercultural knowledge, (c) Acquiring intercultural communicative competence.

BIO-DATA: Victoria Guillén-Nieto
Victoria Guillén-Nieto holds a degree in English Studies from the University of Alicante in Spain. In 1994 she completed a Ph.D. in English Studies-Applied Linguistics from the same university. She also holds a Master’s degree in Forensic Linguistics from the University “Pompeu Fabra” in Barcelona. As a senior lecturer in this department, she has been lecturing in applied linguistics and Business English for over twenty years. She currently conducts the research project COMINTER-SIMULNEG (I+D+i HUM 2006-12989/FILO) and co-edits (with Carmen Marimón-LLorca and Chelo Vargas-Sierra) the book Intercultural Business Communication and Simulation and Gaming Methodology, vol. 83, Linguistic Insights, Peter Lang, forthcoming 2009.
Pedro Pernías-Peco is a lecturer in the Department of Languages and Computer Systems at the University of Alicante, and teaches multimedia techniques and new technologies applied to education. At present he is the joint director (with Manuel Marco Such) of the Virtua working group at the Department of Languages and Computer Systems, a team that has implemented the computer version of official Spanish Internet courses for the Instituto Cervantes, and for the government of the province of Alberta (Canada).

intercultural communicative competence, business english, constructivist learning.