Multicultural Guidance Skills in digital support - Instructions

These instructions provide the information needed to earn the Multicultural Guidance Skills badge.
DigiUp Project

The aim of the instructions is to promote equality.The purpose is to strengthen the digital support provider's ability to operate in a multicultural environment. The instructions help the digital support provider improve their language and cultural awareness. We encourage better consideration and recognition of the linguistic, cultural and social integrational needs of diverse clients. The badge can be earned on the Digital and Population Data Services Agency's website.

We recommend that you earn the Ethical Guidelines and Guidance Skills badges before the Multicultural Guidance Skills badge.

MULTICULTURALISM IN DIGITAL SUPPORT

In order to reach equality, the diversity of digital support providers and their clients must be taken into consideration and recognised. One aspect of diversity is multiculturalism, which is the focus of these instructions. Multiculturalism refers to ethnic, linguistic, religious and other cultural diversity. These instructions address linguistic and cultural awareness along with social integration in digital support.

When working with culturally diverse digital support clients, the digital support provider must examine their own attitudes, habits and perceptions. It is important to treat a person with a different cultural background as an individual, not as a representative of the culture as a whole.  

MULTICULTURAL GUIDANCE SKILLS

The digital support provider must possess a variety of skills in order to provide digital support to clients from different cultural backgrounds.

Technical skills are important, but dialogue and guidance skills are emphasised in multicultural field. In order to ensure a mutually positive experience, it is a good idea to ensure that you are present and reserve enough time for guidance session.


Checklist - 5 things to remember   

  •  Engage, i.e. be present   
  •  Be respectful   
  •  Listen
  •   Ask, i.e. ask open-ended questions    
  •  Encourage  

Read and learn more in JAMK's Monikulttuurisen ohjauksen työkalupakkiin (Multicultural Guidance Toolkit - In Finnish Only).

LANGUAGE AWARENESS

A linguistically aware digital support provider

A linguistically aware digital support provider understands that the level of Finnish language skills vary. Even though multilingual materials enhance self-guidance, written instructions alone are usually not enough. The usage history of the digital vocabulary may vary from client to client. Make sure that you and the client are talking about the same things. Please note that automatic translation is not always reliable - the meaning of the vocabulary can depend on the context.  

Easy Finnish (Selkokieli)

Easy Finnish is an important tool for increasing the inclusion of immigrants, both in the early stages of integration and later on. Regardless of the the level of language proficiency, Easy Finnish also serves everyone, thus comprehensively promoting equality. In digital environments, it is essential to use clear or Easy Finnish so that difficulties related to language do not increase difficulties related to digital competence.

"Easy Finnish (selkokieli) is a form of Finnish that has been adapted so that it is easier to read and understand than standard Finnish in terms of content, vocabulary and structure. It is targeted at people who have difficulties with reading or understanding standard Finnish."    

Definition of Easy Finnish - Finnish Centre for Easy Language (Selkokeskus).

Pikaopas selkokielen puhumiseen (Quick Guide to Speaking Easy Finnish - In Finnish only) - Finnish Centre for Easy Language (Selkokeskus)..

 

CULTURAL AWARENESS

Culturally-aware digital support provider

A culturally-aware digital support provider must identify their own ways of thinking and acting, and adopt an approach that suits in a given situation. As a digital support provider, you should be aware of your own cultural background and how it influences guidance session. Both parties have the right to express their own culture and be accepted and heard with it. In guidance situations, interaction with the client must be open-minded and free of any assumptions.

Diversity of service cultures

As a digital support provider, it should be kept in mind that clients come from different service cultures, digital habits and environments. They may be accustomed to different practices in education, interactions and services. Many people are unfamiliar with e-services.

Digital culture

Digital support providers must consider that different societies have different digital cultures. Communication approaches, tools and practices can be very different from what the digital support provider is accustomed to. These cultural differences may lead to situations in which people will need to approach service providers at a given location or face-to-face. Not all matters can be completed in a digital environment. If necessary, the digital support provider can direct clients to the service provider's customer service, if one is available.

 

DIGITAL AND SOCIAL INTEGRATION

Digital integration refers to the digital inclusion of people who have moved to Finland, thus enhancing their integration into society. Digital services are often the first contact with Finnish society. Building trust is the foundation of integration. Do not underestimate the role of individual guidance, as it strengthens sense of inclusion. Active participation in society requires digital skills, where the digital support provider also strengthens the client's social orientation and digital inclusion. Active participation in society requires digital skills, where the digital support provider also strengthens the client's social orientation and digital inclusion. For many, digital environment, practises and forms are completely new concepts that require repetition, patience and empathy. Digital environments do not always offer an opportunity to ask additional questions or meet a customer service representative face-to-face.

The role of the digital support provider in social integration

The digital support provider must be able to provide individual advice, create a sense of security in a new digital environment and build the trust of the person in their social participation. In addition to supporting the use of a digital service, a digital support provider may also play a role in ensuring that the client understands the role of the service in society as a whole and that the client has access to the right information. 

Read more on the subject at:

Contact information

Artëm Kuosti

Puh. +358 (0)50 551 1824
Email address: artem.kuosti@moniheli.fi

Yuri Kitaba

Puh. +358 (0)50 551 1821
Email address: yuri.kitaba@moniheli.fi

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