Accepted Paper:

The European joint MA "CREOLE": teaching diversity on diverse levels  

Author:

Anna Streissler (University of Vienna)

Paper short abstract:

A new Masters programme in social anthropology jointly run by six different European universities is presented in which diversity is taught respectively conveyed on three levels: as theoretical topic, as academic context and as research experience.

Paper long abstract:

The Joint MA programme CREOLE: Cultural Differences and Transnational Processes (www.univie.ac.at/creole) is a four-semester Masters programme in anthropology run jointly since the winter term of 2007/08 by the departments of the Autonomous University of Barcelona and the universities of Ljubljana, Lyon II, Maynooth, Stockholm and Vienna.

Students are encouraged to deal with diversity on two, sometimes three levels: 1) As a core topic of the curriculum, dealing with anthropological theories of diversity. 2) By experiencing different academic cultures. Students are required to study in at least two, possibly three different universities, thus experiencing diversity also through different teaching approaches, different engagements with theories and literature, different approaches to field research. Furthermore their MA theses will be jointly supervised by two lecturers of two different departments. In July 2008 CREOLE students and staff come together for 10 days of lectures and debates in which these differences in academic culture are pivotal for fruitful academic exchange. 3) By carrying out fieldwork in the city/cities they visit. Although not a prerequisite, some students are planning fieldwork during their stay abroad, many of them on different aspects of migration. So they will be studying cultural diversity, often of groups considered culturally different from the receiving society in settings where they themselves are visitors.

The presentation will give an overview of the programme and then focus on students' experiences of diversity, drawing on reflexive papers which the students are asked to write after finishing the first two semesters of their studies.

Panel W091
Teaching diversity (workshop of the EASA TAN network)