Silence and Personal Space Coming Together

Stefani Kraker and Prof. Kim

Over the past 10 months, I have had the wonderful opportunity to work with Professor Kim of Pace’s Education Department and TESOL program. In our time collaborating together on a series of papers regarding cultural diversity in the classroom, I feel that I have improved as a writer and as a team player. Professor Kim is a generous mentor who is encouraging and always inspiring me to do and become a better researcher and writer.

At this stage in our research, Professor Kim and I are continuing to edit and revise our two prepared papers for publication. Although this is a slow moving process, we are hopeful to have both completed by the end of April. As we read through and improve word use and clarity, the writing process is illuminated once again and I am able to learn further. Making the writing more accessible requires a deeper understanding of the material, and I am absorbing more and more each time we run through the paper.

In our research, we have discovered that certain cultures appreciate silence and may view it as a form of communication or comfortableness with other individuals. The rationales may differ for these feelings, however, the percentages of individuals who were comfortable, uncomfortable, or their opinion was dependent on other factors

As they stand, the first of our papers is about ready for the second stage of review before publication. The second of our papers is near completion and submission for the first stage of review. Our intention is to complete at least one more paper in this series and have an array of writing covering different aspects of nonverbal communication and how these are interpreted differently based on culture.

I found this project to be extremely interesting because of my interest in cultural differences and the impact they can have in the school setting. I feel that I have learned a lot about diverse backgrounds and upbringings, and am more appreciative of the distinctions between people. Conclusions were also drawn based on similarities, because despite cultural divides, people have many traits in common.

I have had an exceptional experience with Professor Kim, and we hope to continue our collaborative work over the summer.

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