Global Awareness and Intercultural Communication Seminar

student studying on laptop
Remote

Improve Your Cross-Cultural Understanding and Conversational Fluency 

Our new, online Global Awareness and Intercultural Communication Seminar (GAIC) is a comprehensive, remote-instruction program designed to provide students with an intensive and communicative learning experience. This enriching program offers international undergraduates a unique opportunity to enhance their understanding of U.S. culture and society, while improving their English-language abilities from their home country. 

Create a Custom Program

All of our Short-Term Content-Based Programs can be customized to fit your needs. For more information on how to set up a custom, content-based program, contact Xin Chen at xsch@ucdavis.edu.

Program Benefits

This intensive program focuses on American culture, global societies and conversational fluency. The program curriculum provides long-term value that will prepare students to be global citizens. By analyzing the United Nation’s Sustainability Development Goals, participants will increase their understanding of current issues around the world and consider how they can make a difference. Students will also learn current trends in American culture and compare it to their own cultures, while engaging in synchronous English-language discussion sessions.

  • Improve analytical skills by reading articles, listening to lectures, watching audiovisual programs and discussing current research
  • Develop English vocabulary and literacy skills
  • Strengthen discussion and fluency skills
  • Enhance understanding of social and cultural movements that are changing people’s lives in the U.S. 
  • Expand knowledge about future career choices 

Program Details

This three-week, remote-learning program is offered twice a year (summer and winter) and includes 54.5 hours of synchronous learning plus 45 hours of asynchronous work. The program is open to students of all English levels who want an intensive learning experience in a short-time frame.

  • Highly qualified and experienced teachers
  • No F-1 Visa required
  • Synchronous instruction via Zoom
  • Asynchronous instruction via the Canvas Learning Management System 
  • UC Davis students as conversation partners 
  • Live weekly lectures and discussion seminars 
smiling male student

Engaging Curriculum


Courses are designed to improve students’ linguistic skills and develop their critical thinking and analytical skills through dynamic discussions of various cultural and social topics. Students will also expand their soft skills, such as interpersonal skills, communication skills and social skills. Students will engage in homework, assignments and discussion sessions through Canvas and are expected to spend one hour per class day on homework.

Hot Topics in American Culture

12 hours/synchronous

  • Increase your knowledge of American values and attitudes, institutions, history and culture through current “hot topics” in American culture
  • Experience the importance of cross-cultural understanding through a variety of activities such as discussions, projects and presentations
  • Improve critical thinking skills

Global Awareness through Sustainability Development Goals (SDG)

20 hours/synchronous

  • Understand the importance of approaching SDGs as members of the global community
  • Develop the mindset of global competencies as global citizens
  • Deepen an understanding of today’s complex world in relation to cultural, social, political and global contexts

Intercultural Communication Skills

12 hours/synchronous

  • Improve intercultural, social and academic oral communication skills
  • Learn how to engage in a Q & A sessions
  • Improve use of eye contact, posture, gestures and voice (including pronunciation)
  • Quickly organize and deliver impromptu speeches
  • Learn to respect various points of view

Weekly Lecture Series

To widen students’ horizons, content experts from various fields, including professors, researchers, graduate students, business professionals and local leaders, will offer a weekly lecture series on Fridays. These lectures will be followed by discussion sections where UC Davis student assistants will lead small group discussions to enhance students’ understanding of the lectures.

  • 3 Special Lectures (4.5 hours/synchronous)
  • 3 Discussion Sections (3 hours/synchronous)
  • 3 Conversation Clubs (3 hours/synchronous)
  • 4 Discussion Sessions with UC Davis Student Assistants (4 hours/synchronous embedded in Global Awareness through SDG)

Participants must have a high-school diploma or be at least 18 years old to enroll in this program.