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MA Intercultural Communication

Course Overview

This innovative course was the first of its kind in the UK, and provides in-depth training in intercultural communication drawing on the latest developments in linguistic and psychological theory. The focus on cultural diversity and communication issues will develop your ability to analyse and explain cultural differences in language use and in intercultural interactions and to design effective intercultural training programmes. You will also examine and critically evaluate theories and research findings relating to communication across cultures.

Together with the core topics in intercultural communication, you may choose option units to enhance your career ambitions in areas such as International Relations, Peacekeeping, and Travel and Tourism. Differences in the way we communicate can affect interpersonal and intercultural relations and you will learn, with the help of business, education and international relations case studies, how perceived cultural differences can be analysed and notions of miscommunication and negative stereotyping can be minimised.

The course will also teach you how to design, implement and effectively evaluate intercultural training programmes, equipping you with the practical and professional skills of the trainer/adviser. This will enable you to address contemporary issues affecting today’s multicultural societies, both nationally and internationally.

Drawing on latest developments in linguistic and psychological theory, you will receive in-depth training in intercultural communication, with a particular focus on cultural diversity and intercultural interactions.

You will design, implement and evaluate training programmes, work that will equip you with the professional skills of the trainer/adviser, and enable you to address issues affecting multicultural societies.

Key information

    Course name

    MA Intercultural Communication

    Total academic credits

    180 credits

    Qualification awarded


    Awarding body

    University of Bedfordshire

    Professional recognition


    Academic level

    Postgraduate (QCF_NQF Level 7)

    Study mode

    Full time - Classroom


    12 months

    Tuition fees




    Work placement


    Course location


Academic entry requirements

To apply for a postgraduate degree (MA/MSc/MBA/LLM) at the University of Bedfordshire you should have a good honours degree (or equivalent qualification) in an appropriate subject from a recognised university or HE institution. The university will also consider candidates with other relevant qualifications or appropriate work experience.

English entry requirements

IELTS score of 6.0 overall with no less than 5.5 in any subcomponent; OR evidence that you have been instructed and assessed predominantly in English for a significant part of your educational career.

Assessment methods

The course uses a range of assessment methods. You are required to undertake a variety of group activities leading to individual assessment and individually based assessments. These assessments include individual reports, presentations and examinations.

In some assessments, you collaborate in groups with other students to identify and research different case studies. The information prepared by the group then forms the basis of your individual assessment. The assessments test knowledge and understanding of the subject matter.

The written assignments and formative group reports contribute to the learning outcomes focusing on your ability to research and critically evaluate elements of the curriculum in depth. They generally allow you to use a variety of academic sources to support your viewpoints.

The end-of-unit assignments and examinations focus primarily on critical discussion of theory and current practice and provide the reassurance of guaranteed student authorship, and a true measure of your own ability and understanding.

Progression route

This course is primarily aimed at people wanting to move directly into employment but if you find your studies particularly stimulating and want to study further then there is always the possibility to continue to Doctoral studies.

Career opportunities

This course provides you with the knowledge and skills to work in the field of intercultural training and international relocation, preparing clients to work internationally. Your membership of SIETAR will allow you to network with practitioners in this field prior to and after graduation.

If you do not wish to become a trainer, you will be well placed to apply for positions in organisations where your understanding of culture and its impact on different societies is needed. You may wish to apply for positions within variety of organisations or charities, such as: NGOs, HRM departments or marketing departments within international organisations; the Police or Armed Forces; or local or international government institutions’.



  • Cultural Diversity and Change (15 credits)
  • The Communication Process (15 credits)
  • Language and Intercultural Relations (15 credits)
  • Intercultural Training (15 credits)
  • Engaging with Research (15 credits)
  • Communication in Business (15 credits)
  • Dissertation (60 credits)


  • Theories of International Relations and International Institutions (15 credits)
  • Globalisation Conflict and Reform (15 credits)
  • World Making Tourism and Globalisation (15 credits)
  • Peace and Security Operations (15 credits)
  • Gender Security and Peace Operations (15 credits)


Reasons for choosing this course

  • Study with highly regarded visiting professors and inspirational guest speakers
  • Explore option units to suit your interests and ambitions, choosing from option units delivered by acknowledged experts in their fields that will enhance your employability and career trajectory
  • Develop an understanding of how cultural differences can be analysed and negative stereotyping minimised, and critically evaluate theories and research findings relating to communication across cultures
  • Gain membership of the Society for Intercultural Education, Training and Research
  • Benefit from a course that culminates in the autonomous production of a dissertation which may be a piece of investigative research or a piece of creative work involving the production and evaluation of intercultural training material


Main learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, graduates should be able to:-

  • Critically discuss the concept of culture and its role in the communication process
  • Draw on empirical evidence to explain in depth how linguistic and cultural factors can influence (positively or negatively )communication effectiveness and the appropriate management of relationships
  • Autonomously carry out sophisticated pragmatic/discourse analysis of cross-cultural and intercultural data, using appropriate theoretical and analytical frameworks, and explain their relevance to intercultural communication and training
  • Apply understanding of intercultural communication to help deal effectively with cultural diversity issues in domains such as international business ,education, health, conflict resolution and government policies
  • Apply appropriate theoretical and analytical concepts in order to design effectively, implement sensitively and evaluate critically an intercultural training/briefing programme
  • Plan and undertake in-depth research into a chosen area relevant to intercultural communication and demonstrate the ability to independently evaluate current research, using advanced scholarship and associated methodologies to justify their work and the work of others, taking into account the ethical and practical issues associated with research or training

How this course will enhance your career prospects:

The course will foster employability through key skills development linked to practice, including effective communication orally and in writing.

In addition, intercultural competence is becoming increasingly important in our global economy. By studying intercultural communication, you are equipped with the skills to work in a wide variety of institutions and organisations. The practical Intercultural Training unit prepares you to work in the field of intercultural training or in relocation companies.

The emphasis is on the differing cultures in both multi-cultural and international organisations, including domains such as health, education, NGOs, conflict management, aid agencies and business. This equips you to find careers in intercultural training; international business; international relations; travel and tourism; teaching; NGOs; Health and Aid Agencies; the UN; the Peace Corps; and Peace Keeping organisations.


Graduate impact statement

The course has been designed to develop graduates who are able to:

  • Think critically and independently in evaluating different interpretations of intercultural interactions and their impact on specific audiences
  • Deploy theories of intercultural communication and related cultural theories as tools to evaluate different normative dimensions in the field of international relations and international business and seek meaningful solutions to a variety of cultural issues in relevant fields
  • Demonstrate the skills-set ,(specifically cultural and linguistic understanding) needed to be effective in the management of intercultural interactions in international business, charities and political organisations
  • Create a needs analysis for a specific client and prepare relocation packages as well as training materials to meet those needs