Cultural intelligence (CQ) is the ability to adapt and function effectively in different cultural contexts. It is a vital skill for anyone who works or interacts with people from diverse backgrounds, such as managers, leaders, employees, students, travelers, etc.
But how can we measure and improve our CQ? How can we know if we are culturally competent or not? Fortunately, there are various assessment tools and methods that can help us evaluate and develop our CQ. In this blog post, we will explore some of the most popular and effective ones.
The Cultural Intelligence Scale (CQS)
The CQS is a self-report questionnaire that measures four dimensions of CQ: metacognitive, cognitive, motivational, and behavioral. Metacognitive CQ refers to the awareness and regulation of one’s own cultural assumptions and strategies. Cognitive CQ refers to the knowledge and understanding of different cultures and their norms, values, and beliefs. Motivational CQ refers to the interest and willingness to learn about and engage with different cultures. Behavioral CQ refers to the ability to adapt one’s verbal and nonverbal behaviors to different cultural situations.
The CQS consists of 20 items that are rated on a seven-point Likert scale from 1 (strongly disagree) to 7 (strongly agree). The total score ranges from 20 to 140, with higher scores indicating higher levels of CQ. The CQS has been validated in various contexts and populations and has shown good reliability and validity.
The Cultural Intelligence Center’s Assessments
The Cultural Intelligence Center is an organization that provides research-based training and consulting on CQ. They offer various assessments that measure different aspects of CQ, such as:
– The CQ Multi-Rater Assessment: This is a 360-degree feedback tool that allows individuals to receive feedback on their CQ from multiple sources, such as peers, supervisors, subordinates, customers, etc. The feedback covers the four dimensions of CQ as well as specific behaviors and skills related to each dimension.
– The CQ Strategy Assessment: This is a scenario-based tool that measures how individuals plan and execute culturally appropriate strategies in different situations. The assessment presents various scenarios that require cross-cultural interactions and asks individuals to choose the best course of action from a list of options.
– The CQ Action Assessment: This is a video-based tool that measures how individuals perform culturally appropriate behaviors in different situations. The assessment presents various videos that depict cross-cultural interactions and asks individuals to rate the effectiveness of the behaviors displayed by the actors.
These assessments are designed to complement the CQS and provide more detailed and actionable feedback on one’s CQ strengths and weaknesses.
The Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI)
The IDI is a theory-based tool that measures one’s intercultural competence based on the developmental model of intercultural sensitivity (DMIS). The DMIS describes six stages of intercultural development: denial, polarization, minimization, acceptance, adaptation, and integration. Denial is the lowest stage where one is unaware or indifferent to cultural differences. Polarization is where one sees cultural differences in terms of us versus them or right versus wrong. Minimization is where one downplays or ignores cultural differences and assumes universal similarities. Acceptance is where one recognizes and appreciates cultural differences without judging them. Adaptation is where one can adjust one’s behavior and communication to fit different cultural contexts. Integration is where one can move fluidly between different cultural perspectives and identities.
The IDI consists of 50 items that are rated on a five-point Likert scale from 1 (strongly disagree) to 5 (strongly agree). The total score ranges from 55 to 145, with higher scores indicating higher levels of intercultural competence. The IDI also provides feedback on one’s perceived orientation (how one thinks one is) and developmental orientation (how one actually is) as well as a personalized development plan.
Cultural intelligence is a crucial skill for today’s globalized world. By using these assessment tools and methods, we can measure and improve our CQ and become more effective in cross-cultural interactions.
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(1) Measuring Cultural Intelligence | SpringerLink. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-030-18171-0_3
(2) Cultural Intelligence: What Is It and How Can It Effectively Be …. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35997410/
(3) Measuring Cultural Intelligence: Implications and Opportunities. https://rbr.business.rutgers.edu/sites/default/files/documents/rbr-020205.pdf
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