Third Space Lab – DKU Multilingual Storybook

Launched on May 11th, DKU Multilingual Storybook is an intercultural project initiated by the Third Space Lab in which DKU students create, translate, and illustrate. The children’s stories are written in Professor Stephanie Anderson’s LIT109: Writing Stories for Children classes and translated in Professor Emmanuelle Chiocca’s French102: Beginning French 2 classes, with illustrations from a small number of DKU student illustrators and CISK students. This is a non-profit project and the content contained in it is licensed and not for commercial use.

You can find the DKUY Multilingual Storybook here.

Bonne lecture!

Report on the Live Tour of Prehistory: Exploring the Lascaux Cave of Southwest France

Reported by Scott Mauldin

The DKU Community was invited on Friday, April 7th, to a live tour via Zoom of the Lascaux Cave complex, one of the world’s most famous and significant sites of prehistoric cave paintings. For nearly two hours, Lascaux guide Olivier and Lascaux IV technical coordinator Laurent Puichaud demonstrated the wealth of paintings, carvings, and other archeological traces from the cave system, located in Southwest France, which was inhabited and decorated more than 17,000 years ago during the last Ice Age. The more than 600 paintings and 6000 figures in the cave depict many of the animals that the artists shared the area with, including images that resemble extinct species (aurochs), species no longer found in the area (Przewalski’s horses), or even mythical animals (unicorn). Significantly, the cave also depicts geometric and abstract shapes, giving insights into the development of human art and psychology, and possibly spirituality. The guide answered many questions from the more than 50 students, faculty, and staff in attendance.

The event was organized by Emmanuelle Chiocca, Assistant Professor of Applied Linguistics and International Education in the Language and Culture Center, and was originally planned only for the students of her French 102 course. However, after high excitement and interest, the event was opened to the entire DKU Community. The event was sponsored by the Third Space Lab, Humanities Research Center, Language and Culture Center, and the Office of Undergraduate Studies, which helped to cover the fees for the tour as well as refreshments for attendees of the on-campus viewing.

If you are interested in watching the recording of the live tour, please email Dr. Emmanuelle Chiocca at or join the Third Space Lab Sakai site with your Duke Net ID.

Dec. 3 – Third Space Lab – Guest Speaker Series – Chad Hoggan – The Varieties of Transformative Experience

Dear all,

You are cordially invited to the guest lecture of the Third Space Lab by Associate Professor Chad Hoggan (North Carolina State University) on The Varieties of Transformative Experience.
We hope you will join us!
Please RSVP here:

Date: December 3rd, 2021

Time:  10 pm (China time) / 9 am (EST) / 3 pm (Berlin time)

Zoom Meeting ID:      248 487 9248

Presentation Description:

This presentation traces the history of transformative learning theory within the discipline of adult education. It presents a new metatheory of transformation based on the vast scholarship that has arisen around transformative learning. Included in this metatheory are definitions and criteria to distinguish transformative learning from other types of learning, a typology of transformational outcomes, key components of the transformation process, conceptual tools by which to analyze different types of transformation, and implications for practice.

Continue reading “Dec. 3 – Third Space Lab – Guest Speaker Series – Chad Hoggan – The Varieties of Transformative Experience”

Portraits of Third Spaces: Your DKU/Kunshan/Durham Story – Narrative Contest

Your time studying at DKU, returning “home,” or living abroad may have been filled with unique and fascinating experiences; the Third Space Lab invites you to share them with the world!

Submit your personal narrative about intercultural or international experiences for a chance to win recognition and prizes. Topics could include such things as culture shock, finding yourself in another culture, new understanding of your own cultural background, your sojourn during the pandemic, your growth as a global citizen, or other intercultural or international themes. Submissions in other languages than English are welcome if they are accompanied by their an English translation.

Please submit your written narratives (up to 5000 words) to Chi Zhang by December 20 ( Various formats are acceptable, including personal narratives, scholarly self-analyses, short stories based on your experiences, poems, and others.

Three narratives will be selected by a panel of DKU students, faculty, and staff. Information about prizes will be shared soon!

Winners will be announced in January.

Third Space Lab – Guest Speaker Series – Michael Byram – Why intercultural (critical) competence in languaculture teaching?

Dear all,

You are cordially invited to the guest lecture of the Third Space Lab by Professor Emeritus Michael Byram (Durham University, UK). We hope you will join us!
Please RSVP here: 

Date: April 30th, 2021

Time: 7 pm (China time) / 7 am (EST) / 12 pm (UK time)

Zoom Meeting ID:  985 9099 3775

Why intercultural (critical) competence in languaculture teaching?

I will begin with a personal answer to my title question, and describe my professional journey from studying languages to teaching and researching intercultural citizenship in language teaching, and across the curriculum.

I will then argue for the educational values of teaching for intercultural communicative competence and intercultural citizenship, using both an example and an educational perspective. The example will demonstrate that language teaching and intercultural competence teaching are inter-related and mutually supportive: language learning is improved by teaching for intercultural citizenship.

My position has however implications for teachers which cannot be ignored. There are ethical issues to consider and challenges to professional identities, and I will raise these for discussion.


Michael Byram is Professor Emeritus at Durham University (UK) and Research Professor at Sofia University, Bulgaria. He studied Modern and Medieval Languages at King’s College, Cambridge, including a PhD in Danish literature, and then taught French and German in secondary and adult education. He then moved to Durham University, where he was involved in teacher training and research on languages and education. His books include Minority Education and Ethnic Survival (1986) and Teaching and Assessing Intercultural Communicative Competence – Revisited (2021). He was Adviser to the Council of Europe Language Policy Division and a member of the working group which produced the Council of Europe’s Reference Framework of Competences for Democratic Culture.

To think about in advance:

When people ask me “What do the English think about…. (e.g. global warming or capital punishment or Donald Trump etc etc.)”, they think that, because I am English, I can tell them. Yet I hesitate and try to avoid answering. If they ask me if ‘he goed to London yesterday’ is correct, because I am English, I don’t hesitate; I know the answer. Is it possible to know about ‘English culture’ – or any other? Instead of ‘English’ put your own word and ask yourself how you would answer.

How important is it to teach/learn knowledge? Which knowledge?  How important to teach/learn skills? Which skills? How important to teach/learn attitudes? Which attitudes?

To watch in advance:

Third Space Lab – Guest Speaker Series – Adrian Holliday on Third Space Methodology

Dear all,

You are cordially invited to the guest lecture of the Third Space Lab by Dr. Adrian Holliday (Canterbury Christ Church University). We hope you will join us!
Please RSVP here:

Date: April 9th, 2021

Time: 5 pm (China time)/5 am (EST)/10 am (UK time)

Zoom Meeting ID: 936 1008 0413

Third-space methodology: Finding deCentred threads in small culture formation on the go

The biggest barrier to intercultural travel is its framing as between large, national or civilisational ‘cultures’. This framing falsely claims, for example, that (a) Western and Eastern people are essentially different to each other because their behaviour and values are determined by these separate large ‘cultures’, and that (b) learning a second language requires the native-speakerist activity of learning a second large ‘culture’. This large-culture approach originates from a racist, structural-function­al­­ist, Orientalist, Centre, Western grand narrative that falsely separates the world into superior individualist and inferior collectivist ‘cultures’. It therefore creates essentialist blocks that pull us apart.
Intercultural travel instead requires deCentred threads. This is not learning the ‘other culture’. Although we are brought up differently in our national systems, with different histories, practices and architectures, we share everyday, common, hybrid, underlying, intercultural experience ‘on the go’ such as going to school for the first time, visiting friends’ families, and joining new work and leisure groups. This existing underlying intercultural competence needs to be recalled as the best resource for engaging with more distant intercultural realities. However, ‘us’-‘them’ prejudice is everywhere and makes us vulnerable to blocking large-culture grand narratives. Third-space methodology is the hard and uncomfortable, intersubjective work of rooting out and putting aside prejudice in a new, deCentred, decolonising, thinking-as-usual. We can then see culture as creative, flowing, changing, hybrid, boundary dissolving and figurative, rather than confining and separating.

About the speaker

Adrian Holliday is a professor of applied linguistics and intercultural education at Canterbury Christ Church University. After completing his Bachelor’s in sociology in 1971 and beginning his career as a teacher of English, History, Economics and Sociology in London, he embarked on a six-year international experience as an English teacher and then English program manager in Iran, from 1973 to 1979. After returning to the UK and completing a masters degree at Lancaster University, from 1980-1985, he was involved in setting up the English for Special Purposes Centre at Damascus University in Syria. This is now the successful Higher Languages Institute. Then, in 1985-1990, Professor Holliday was involved in a national university curriculum project in Egypt which comprised 18 universities across the country. The experiences during this project provided him material for his Ph.D. at Lancaster University, which he received in 1990. He headed the Graduate School at Canterbury Christ Church University from 2002-2017, providing academic management for research degrees, and was a program director for the Ph.D.s in Applied Linguistics and in Education. He also chaired the  British Association of TESOL Qualifying Institutions and helped set up the British Institute of English Language Teaching. Throughout his career, he has been developing his thinking and writing around the relationship between the individual, culture and social structures. His long-standing relationship with Iran and the Middle East has provided him with an awareness of the global politics which surround these relationships.

This event will be recorded and posted on the Third Space Lab’s Sakai site for all to view.

Calling for Research Participants: First-Year Students and Third Space Lab – Part 2

Calling for first-year students as research participants for our study on “Transformative Learning and Third Space Personae in International Education”. Randomly selected students will earn a RMB 100 gift card for participating in the survey. Please click the link below to register and find out more:

For any questions, please contact Dr. Emmanuelle Chiocca at or Dr. Zhang Xin at

Third Space Lab at SIETAR USA 2020 Conference

Recently, the three co-directors of the Third Space Lab presented at SIETAR USA to discuss the adaptations of their lab (its research agenda, workshops, training of research assistants, etc.) to the online context, in a session entitled Fostering Perspective Transformation in Third Spaces in Virtual Settings.

International education took an undeniable hit with Covid-19 and its consequences on mobility. While many institutions contemplate the possibility of offering in-person courses, others are reflecting on hybrid models or fully online programs to welcome their students this fall. A consequence of the situation is that pre-departure programs for study abroad sojourns and orientation for international freshmen, when not simply canceled, saw themselves reduced to the bare minimum. Rooted in the interventionist paradigm, which challenges the “immersion myth” that simply being abroad leads to positive intercultural growth and other deep changes, this Ned Talk addresses the virtual adaptations to interventions developed by a humanities research lab, the Third Space Lab(TSL) at a Sino-American higher education institution.

In light of uncertainty regarding study abroad semester for Chinese and international juniors to go to the US, as well as the arrival of incoming freshmen on campus in China, the Third Space Lab moved online to optimize students’ intercultural experiences by offering a series of online workshops, a series of online guest lectures, cultural events, and other resources for various cohorts of students. The virtual workshops address a series of topics including (1) learning about the host culture by creating their own research projects abroad, (2) learning how to reflect, (3) learning strategies for meaningful intercultural encounters, and (4) learning strategies for managing conflict experienced in their intercultural encounters. Guest lectures and cultural events showcase translingual and multicultural Third Spaces stories and encourage students to reflect on their own international education experience in cultural hybridity.

Showcasing TSL’s various virtual events, this Ned Talk addressed the conceptual and practical applications of Transformative Learning via intercultural sensitivity and Third Space personae development principles, as well as via conflict resolution.

For more information about these adaptations, you can watch the recording here:

Third Space Lab Recruits Research Participants for a Longitudinal Study – Transformative Learning and Third Space Personae Development in Global Education

Dear First-Year Students,

We are looking for incoming first-year students about to study at DKU to participate in a research project conducted by Emmanuelle S. Chiocca, Ph.D., Zhang Xin, Ph.D., co-directors of the Third Space Lab and faculty members in the Language and Culture Center.

Our research project revolves around students’ change as a result of living and studying in a translingual and intercultural environment. This research is being conducted in higher education institutions both in China and in the United States. You were selected as a possible participant because you are about to study at DKU. Continue reading “Third Space Lab Recruits Research Participants for a Longitudinal Study – Transformative Learning and Third Space Personae Development in Global Education”

Third Space Lab Recruits Research Participants – Transformative Learning and Conflict Resolution in International Education

Dear Sophomores and Juniors,

We are looking for students for a research study conducted by Emmanuelle S. Chiocca, Ph.D. and Saghar Leslie Naghib, Ph.D.

Our research project revolves around the change that students undergo as a result of studying in an intercultural and multilingual higher education setting.

We are trying to understand how students make sense of their experiences in an intercultural and translingual higher education setting and how their experiences contributed to their change, if any. We would very much appreciate your support by participating in our survey. The survey should take approximately 15-20 minutes to complete and is strictly voluntary.

After the survey, if you are interested in participating further and are selected for it, there is a second, more in-depth phase with the possibility of compensation for your time. If you opt in, we will contact you to schedule a 30-60 minute Zoom or in-person interview. Eventually, if selected, we would like to interview you before and after you study at Duke for another 30-minute Zoom or in-person interview. If selected, and if you agree to it, we will also ask you to record your experience during your time at DKU and at Duke in the form of journaling, videos, and/or photos (things you might already engage in). The information collected will be kept confidential (we will be the only ones with access to your personal information such as your email address) and will be used for research purposes only. Participants of both the survey and the interview phases of the study will receive a 300 RMB gift card, and the chance to develop a portfolio/signature work out of their Third Space story-building and story-telling guided by the Third Space Lab.

You will find the link to the survey below:


Emmanuelle S. Chiocca, Ph.D. and Saghar Leslie Naghib, Ph.D.