Miami University business students required to improve ‘cultural intelligence’

Miami University business students required to improve ‘cultural intelligence’

Miami University Farmer School of Business will now require its incoming students to commit to improving their ‘cultural intelligence’.

As part of their degrees, Miami University has announced that Farmer School of Business students must now develop comprehensive four-year plans of study with the aim of improving their levels of cultural intelligence.

The university says this new requirement aims to provide its students with a skill set that will prepare them for the business environment that they will enter into upon their graduation.

It is hoped that this unified strategy will enable them to better relate to and work across cultural differences that they encounter both at home and abroad, in the workplace, marketplace and society in general.

Cultural intelligence assessment at Miami University on enrolling for business studies

Once undergraduate students enrol at the school of business, they will have to complete an assessment of their current level of cultural intelligence (also known as CQ).

From there, they will create a development plan in accordance with their current levels of knowledge.

What is Cultural Intelligence (CQ)?Pic: Farmer School of Business

The development plans will be drafted by the students within their very first semester of study. These highly individualised plans will focus on skills-building, which can be achieved through both coursework and co-curricular activities (such as internships and study abroad programmes).

The BEYOND READY CQ program has been spearheaded by Gillian Oakenfull, Faculty Director of Diversity and Inclusion at Miami University.

According to the Farmer School of Business, the importance of this initiative lies in the development that it will provide to both these individual students and the organisations that they go on to work for.

Cultural intelligence impacts both organisations and individuals ‘positively’

A Miami University statement said: “Those with high cultural intelligence are attuned to the values, beliefs, attitudes, and body language of people from different cultures; and they use this knowledge to interact with empathy and understanding.

“People with high cultural intelligence are not experts in every culture; rather, they use observation, empathy, and intelligence to read people and situations, and to make informed decisions about why others are acting as they are.

“They also use cultural intelligence to monitor their own actions. Rather than making quick judgments or relying on stereotypes, individuals with high cultural intelligence observe what is happening, and adapt their own behavior accordingly.

“The world is becoming increasingly diverse and complex. Within this environment, effective use of diversity within the workforce has proven to impact positively on both organizational and individual performance.”

Josephine Walbank - Reporter, Global Education Times (GET News)

Josephine Walbank is a reporter for Global Education Times (GET News) with a focus on education in the UK, Asia-Pacific, and Americas, and student experience and lifestyle news.

Josephine is an experienced journalist who previously served as the Editor-in-Chief of The Falmouth Anchor. She is also the former Deputy Editor of Voices, the Falmouth & Exeter Students’ Union’s publication, and has written for various food and lifestyle publications.

You can reach her at

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