The Impact of Digital Learning on Cross-Cultural Communication

Kumi-Yeboah, A. (2018). Designing a cross-cultural collaborative online learning framework for online instructors. Online Learning, 22(4), 181-201. doi:10.24059/olj.v22i4.1520

The key takeaways from this article are that success in online teaching and learning is enhanced when instructors take an intentional approach to including cross-cultural awareness in the curriculum and classroom. This should be done by; including a self-introduction or cultural awareness activity at the beginning of the course; consistently clear, concise, and adequate instructions and feedback are given; being available at all times to answer questions in online discussion forums; creating a caring online community; including culturally diverse content; allowing students to be flexible with choosing activities; using digital tools that promote communication.

Positive: With carefully designed and intentional programs, which incorporate best practices, students can become more motivated and engaged.

Negative: This cross-cultural community building and curriculum development is not easily implemented in all areas of study.


Çiftçi, E. Y. (2016). A Review of Research on Intercultural Learning through Computer-Based Digital Technologies. Educational Technology & Society, 19 (2),313–327.

The literature reviewed in this article indicated a general feeling of enjoyment in working with intercultural groups and increased motivation for pursuing study abroad.  Effective digital tools utilized  included blogs (build a sense of community) and to lesser degree email, chat and podcasts.

CMC (computer mediated communication) allowed people to reflect on both their own and target culture-contributed to becoming culturally competent “to a certain extent”. Overall cultural understanding was mostly superficial and fact based, but this study argued that people could build understanding from superficiality

Positive: An overall satisfaction with digital tools and intercultural learning,and increased knowledge towards both their own and other culture

Negative:Overall cultural understanding was mostly superficial

Frustration when there is technological breakdown

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