Cultural Competence For Students

Developing Cultural Competence (DCC) Student Certificate Program

Zoom screenshot of DCC session

Interested to Develop your Cultural Competence?

Prepare for your international career. The Developing Cultural Competence student certificate program is offered online for NC State students and those from our global partner institutions.

Join our Interest List to be notified of future opportunities

Promoting Cultural Competence

The DCC program aims to improve students’ cultural competence and cross-cultural awareness by facilitating virtual exchanges among participants. The virtual training program consists of self-paced individual learning modules. There are also four 90-minute facilitated meetings where participants can discuss and apply the knowledge and skills they learned in the modules.

Applying Cultural Skills

The course is designed to provide a theoretical framework for understanding culture, learning about cultural dimensions, and improving cultural competence. The program also introduces cultural skills that are immediately applicable to activities on and off-campus. The certificate program appeals to students in all academic disciplines and prepares students to:

  • Identify their own cultural preferences and have the tools to understand the preferences of others
  • Promote cultural awareness in personal and professional settings
  • Implement strategies for working effectively across cultural difference

The virtual exchange experience includes four 90-minute live Zoom facilitated discussions, independent learning, personal reflection, and a group presentation component. Global participants are enrolled in a shared learning management system for shared content and collaboration.

Exploring the World, From Home

Interest in the Developing Cultural Competence student certificate program has grown exponentially since its inception in 2018. In-person educational exchange programs are still limited because of travel restrictions and the COVID-19 pandemic, but students can still connect with others from around the world. Our live, facilitated online discussions promote cultural awareness and provide strategies for working across cultures. More than 1800 students have successfully completed the program already.

Contact Becky Cibulskis ( for more information.

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DCC Co-curricular Benefits

GTI will continue to offer virtual open enrollment offerings through the 2021-2022 Academic Year for NC State students and global partners. Please note that all dates and times are listed in Eastern Daylight Time and Eastern Standard Time, reflective of their alignment with the NC State University academic calendar and time zone. All courses are facilitated in English.

Sessions will be offered depending on student enrollment preferences and facilitator availability. Summer 2022 courses are all intensive, meaning they will meet every day for four consecutive days with the final quiz due on the fifth day. Students should plan to dedicate 3 hours to DCC class and assignments per day.

The priority deadline for each course is two weeks before the first date of the course.

  • May Intensive meets May 9, 10, 11 and 12 8:00-9:30 PM (EST), final due May 13
  • June Intensive meets June 13, 14, 15, and 16 9:00-10:30 AM (EST), final due June 16
  • July Intensive meets July 11, 12, 13, and 14 8:00-9:30 PM (EST), final due July 15

Join the DCC Facilitation Team

Graduate students at NC State University are invited to join the DCC Facilitation Team. Use your global experience and interpersonal skills to guide our community in developing cultural competence.

A male student marks his hometown on a map of the world as a female student looks on.

Student Cultural Competence Program Expands Global Reach

The Global Training Initiative awarded 850 certificates to students who completed the Developing Cultural Competency program during this past academic year. The DCC student certificate has blossomed in the virtual environment, increasing both in overall enrollment numbers and global reach.

“Having these conversations helped me dispel misconceptions about other cultures and share perspective on my own culture. It was designed as a respectful, judgment-free environment and opened up my mind to the cultures of the world.”

Program Overview

Cultural competence is the perpetual process for individual growth in successfully navigating culturally diverse situations and working with people of other cultures. The virtual course includes 4 sessions, each with a self-paced learning module, 90-minute facilitated discussion and reflective exercises.

Orientation and Introductions

– Introduce the learning community
– Connect favorite traditions to cultural identities

Developing Cultural Knowledge

– Group presentation of a cultural knowledge report
– Identify cultural gaps


– Describe one’s personal cultural identities
– Form cultural knowledge research groups

Skills and Application

– Consider how cultural skills bridge gaps
– Apply learning to past experiences and common scenarios

Participant FAQs

Highlights and Benefits

Developing Cultural Competence Student Ambassadors provide an overview of the online program and share their perspectives about the benefits of the certificate program and virtual exchanges (33 minutes).
Certificate Recipients

Congratulations to the following past participants who completed the program and earned the DCC certificate.