Reconsidering Attitude as a Relational, Negotiated Sociocognitive Construct
Zsuzsanna Abrams [+]
University of California Santa Cruz
Byram’s (1997) seminal work on intercultural communication identified attitude as an essential components of intercultural competence, defined as curiosity and openness towards other cultures and regarding one’s own (Byram, 1997; Lee, 2018; Schenker, 2012). After briefly contextualizing intercultural communication, this conceptual chapter connects research on telecollaboration to scholarship on attitude in L2 learning, specifically examining the role of attitude in yielding successful or unsuccessful telecollaborative projects. Next, informed by sociocognitive theory (Atkinson, 2011; Tóth & Davin, 2016) the discussion turns to a reconsideration of attitude as dynamic and relational, shaped by the participants and the pedagogical context in which they participate (e.g., the use of technology and the specific tasks learners are asked to complete). The chapter concludes with pedagogical guidelines for task design that foster the development of positive attitudes as relational skills contributing to intercultural communicative competence and intercultural citizenship (Byram & Wagner, 2018; Huber & Reynolds, 2014).