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Intercultural Challenges
More intercultural challenges
Universidad Rey Juan Carlos
40.337804, -3.869022
Topic Different manners in school

During my exchange, I have noticed that the biggest differences between Finland and Spain have been in the university. In Finland, the teachers are respected and very professional and qualified. During the lessons the students are quiet if the teacher asks them to be and they let people finish what they are saying. It is common in Finland that if you are very late for the class you are not invited there before the next break.

In Madrid, the respect for teachers is in my eyes lesser than in Finland. The lessons are frequently interrupted because the teacher must all the time ask the students to be quiet and to listen to each other’s. The lessons feel like a chaos sometimes when the students are leading the conversation instead of the teacher and the subject seems to change all the time and everyone is sidetracked. The teachers don’t seem to care that much and instead of communicating with people, they just pack their stuff and leave the classes ending the lessons if the students aren’t behaving. Lessons are always also interrupted when people are coming late. It doesn’t matter if you arrive 30 minutes after the lesson has already started, you are always invited in.


In Spain, it belongs to their culture to be more open and be active. They want to be part of the conversation and talk about their opinions. People are speaking loudly and it is part of their culture to continue the conversation interrupting each other’s. The culture is very easy going and people aren’t that strict with being on time as in Finland. It is normal for even the teachers to be late for the class.


If I were the teacher, I would set some ground rules and be strict with the students. I would tell that if you are not in time then you are not allowed to come to the class. I would also tell people that I want them to be part of the conversation in the respectful matter. If there would be students in the class who are all the time causing troubles, doing their own things etc. then I would ask them to leave the class room instead of leaving myself and surrendering to them. I believe that with these regulations all the parts would benefit. Students would have an opportunity to have quality lessons since the teacher could teach without being interrupted all the time.

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