What are the most important things that I should know before buying?
diversophy® provides an exciting and non-threatening environment in which to explore, share, learn about and celebrate cultural differences. This engaging game stimulates awareness of traits, customs, as well as common misconceptions of many different types of groups. Players will recognize their own attitudes about others different from themselves and discover others' perceptions of themselves. Games can be easily customized to address various diversity needs.
Trainers are finding that they can use diversophy® to successfully introduce the topic of diversity to employees, or to incorporate the games into existing intercultural or diversity-training programs as follow-up or reinforcement. A facilitator’s guide is available on How to play diversophy® page.
Letting others know more about how we see, interpret, and talk about an issue is best done by prefacing our own opinions in a way that tells the listener we are speaking to about our own experiences and sharing our own way of seeing things. This makes clear that we're expressing our way of seeing things, and we do not believe that our own opinion is the whole or only truth. For example:
- "Here's how I see..."
- "Here's what happened to me that leads me to think ..."-"I imagine that if..."
- "Some of my constraints are ...
The deepest unconscious values of our origins and experiences continue to work themselves out in our everyday desires and deeds. As a result, we at once reproduce our culture in the world of artifacts, social structures, laws, and art, and, at the same time, reinforce these core values in ourselves and in each other.
How to play? How long? When should it end? How to keep score?
We provide sample excerpts of our games on our website along with general information about the history and applications of the game series. Often people come with the impression that diversophy® is only a quiz with question and answer cards about different cultural groups. Though there are, in fact, two kinds of question and answer cards, testing your Smarts about cultural facts and your Choice of behaviors in culturally unfamiliar situations, diversophy® is much richer. It has three other types of play: exploring the Risks of intercultural interactions, letting the wisdom of the culture you are studying to Guide you, and allowing you to Share similarities and differences between your own culture and the one that you are studying.
This special touch allows us to address specific cultural topics from a variety angles. George Simons and Katrin Volt wrote an article Grow Up & Play! Game Stimulation in Intercultural Learning offering deeper insights into the learning objectives of this game.
Playing diversophy® successfully depends as well on the facilitator. A Facilitator Guide, available on our website, gives clear instructions for how to start, conduct, as well as suggestions about how long to play and how to debrief the game. It includes tips on managing situations when a topic might become emotionally loaded for the players or when a discussion may have become heated. The playing environment should be kept as neutral as possible, since our game’s focus lies in sharing and listening skills. The facilitator will also make sure all players are allowed to voice their opinions equally.
Can you tell me, in a concrete way, the benefits of me paying for these games?
diversophy®, given its researched quality, flexibility and many applications, is in fact rather moderately priced compared with the cost of many training tools and the rising price of textbooks. Facilitators can customize the form of play and reuse the game many, many times. Trainers frequently include the cost of the game in their interventions and leave the game with the client for further use.
What are your best tips for conducting a successful game session?
The game format encourages players to open the minds, better to hear different sides of a story. Gaming gives you a special time to focus on what new cultural knowledge and understanding you might gain from other players. The core value of our game does not lie in the content alone; but rather on human connections we make while playing it. What better and safer environment to discuss about certain cultural topics you always wondered about?
Do you recall often the last cultural incident you faced as a newcomer to a country? Or the good feeling you have while sharing that incident with others because you learned something new, outside of school in the classroom of life?
diversophy® combines the real life experiences of the developers who originally created each game, carefully explored in line with with their academic and professional background knowledge. Our developers thoroughly check and test in practice the validity and accuracy of the information of each game card before the just-in-time published version is created. We also realize the need for regularly reviewing our cards’ content, a top priority that ensures the validity and accuracy of its information.
Communication is the key to understanding, and diversophy® creates a highly suitable environment for such communication to occur. If you find that certain card content does not seem to fit with what you have known so far yourself, diversophy® gives you a chance to share your perspectives and discuss with others as well as provide feedback for the further development of the game. The cards were created to provide players with useful general information for players about new cultures they might not have known about, but also as a tool encouraging players to share and discuss whether the information is true from each individual's perspectives and experiences.
What is the difference between this tool and other training tools?
There is an endless number of intercultural tools both on the market and developed by imaginative teachers and trainers. diversophy®, however, pretty much stands alone in terms of the rich variety of learnings accessible and its content and processes. The element of gamification is becoming more and more recognize for its effectiveness in dealing not just with ideas but with exploring feelings and creating social connections.
Don't believe our words? We have been told by some recent players during our testing sessions with new migrant deck in Finland:
I learned so much in thirty minutes I never knew. It was eye opening and heartwarming. I think this project would be great for the refugees.
The proverbs are very good because it’s underlining the similarities between all cultures. But some questions are little challenging for really “heating” up a discussion. You could ask to think about a similar proverb in each other’s culture and language; talk about differences in religion, tradition, genders, etc.
I really enjoyed the conversations that the game inspired. It created a good structure in which to share feelings and insights that can otherwise make us vulnerable. Thank you for being so inclusive!
Quite nice experience! The idea with cards is interesting and this is better than just talking. One suggestion for improvement would be to add board games.
Definitely have both Finnish and English on the cards. It was quite frustrating for people to wait for the translation.
I think that one of the most interesting part of it is the comparison between difficult habits and ways of behaving, underlying cultural differences and potential cultural shocks.
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