The Impact of Teachers’ Communication Approach on Children’s Co-Cultural Adaptation

Phyllis Ngai (1)
(1) Department of Communication Studies The University of Montana-Missoula, United States


Classrooms, where power, class, and/or cultural differentiations exist among children and their teachers, offer a rewarding setting for intercultural communication research. This case study (1) investigates how teachers in an urban elementary school, use “positive communication” to bring about hope amidst chaos in both the classroom literally and in the lives of inner city children fundamentally and (2) explores the impact of the selected classroom-communication strategies in terms of students’ co-cultural adaptation. The study findings prompt us to consider how teachers can facilitate healthy co-cultural adaptation among children, who are seldom the focus of intercultural communication research.

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The author changed the school name and the names of all other participants for confidential reasons.


Phyllis Ngai (Primary Contact)
Author Biography

Phyllis Ngai, Department of Communication Studies The University of Montana-Missoula

Phyllis Bo-yuen Ngai is currently teaching in the Department of Communication Studies at The University of Montana-Missoula. Dr. Ngai’s research and teaching interests lie at the crossroads of language, culture, communication, and education. Currently, she teaches course in intercultural communication and international & development communication. Her recent research involves intercultural communication in diverse school settings.

Ngai, P. (2015). The Impact of Teachers’ Communication Approach on Children’s Co-Cultural Adaptation. Journal of Intercultural Communication, 15(1), 1–15.

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