Volume 69, Issue 4 (2014), pp. 143–160
The paper presents the discourse of the social work professionalization from the viewpoints of practice, research, academic activity, and professional identity, by revealing the expression of social worker competencies in the changing society. By means of evaluating the 20-year-experience of social worker training in Lithuania, the authors reveal the identity of social work at two levels: professional (academisation and practice) and legal (profession and study status). For the purpose, a novel approach to the formation of the social work theory, study methods, and the education of intercultural communication and lifelong learning is employed.
The current tendencies in global society are clear: the internationalisation of studies in HEIs, the expansion of the labour market, foreign employees with a different cultural background in almost all organisations, etc. A successful professional life depends on the readiness of people to be open to global changes and innovation. Intercultural communication may lead to openness and a better preparation for a future career. This form of communication strengthens a positive attitude towards new trends in the labour market, global business, immigrants and foreigners. In addition, intercultural communication can be used to promote the local culture to others, and to become familiar with remote cultures. This article reveals the importance of intercultural communication for careers, and presents students’ perspectives. According to the results of the survey, intercultural communication is beneficial for personal development: it strengthens qualities such as self-esteem and confidence, and can form new abilities such as critical thinking, problem solving and teamwork. This type of communication provides students with more opportunities to study abroad, and ensures a competitive advantage in business. As students noted, intercultural communication should be practised constantly, and its beneficial aspects have a positive impact on the broader world-view, cultural awareness and career prospects.
Volume 67, Issue 2 (2014), pp. 89–108
In this article authors present the development of intercultural competences as a part of study process. Organization of study process in the modern world is not confined within one institution or one country. Possibilities to study in different joint programmes or choose Erasmus courses are open for many students. Not only the language abilities, but also intercultural awareness and competences influence the quality of communication and level of understanding by the representatives of other cultures. Intercultural competences are one of the very important abilities that are also presented as the outcomes of new methods of education that should prepare students to cope with intercultural environment. Study process requires students to obtain various abilities (application of knowledge, research, special, personal, social). All these abilities are particularly important in conducting comparative research and adopting foreign experience. The article emphasizes that intercultural competencies in modern study process can be assessed on two levels: the level of intercultural communication and intercultural level of scientific research.
The current tendencies of a global society are obvious: the labour market is expanding, people are travelling for various reasons all over the world, every organisation can have foreign workers with different cultural backgrounds, the internationalisation of studies HEIs is constantly being implemented, etc. Successful and effective daily life depends on the readiness of people of any age to be open to global change and innovation. The intense pace of life requires adaptation to new circumstances and the use of internationally recognised tools to address global challenges. This article reveals the benefits of intercultural communication in a global society. This form of communication influences the quality of modern life, and strengthens positive attitudes towards new trends in the labour market, global business, immigrants and foreigners. In addition, intercultural communication can be used to promote local culture to others, and to become familiar with other cultures. The analysis and survey of various sources provides valuable evidence that intercultural communication is beneficial to the quality of daily and professional life, and creates a competitive advantage for labour market professionals. According to the results of the survey, intercultural communication is useful for strengthening self-esteem and confidence, developing new competencies, studying abroad, and managing careers in business.