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U.S. Department of State - Great Seal

U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Explaining America (MQ115)

By understanding oneself, one can better understand others. This course acquaints participants with the major trends in American society today based upon an understanding of the roots of American cultural values. This course also introduces techniques for responding to the difficult questions that frequently arise in social situation overseas and develop skills to articulate to someone from another culture what it means to be American. This course is especially helpful to those relatively new to overseas living on a government assignment.

Participant Feedback:

"Lots of humor- room for personality and different approaches (no right and wrong) - obviously a lot of thought and preparation was put into the facilitation aspect (structuring the class, use of different methods and media, etc.)- facilitation by several persons."

"This was the most concrete set of tips for putting news items, value questions etc. into perspective and was a really useful exercise."

"I especially liked that the presenters were from different subcultures in America and had served in different parts of the world and so as a team had a broader perspective on America and the world."

"Learning a number of different ways to answer questions based on the situation. It opened my mind to different approaches to use in answering questions."

Course Dates and Times
26 September 2013      9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
17 December 2013      9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
6 February 2014      9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
22 April 2014      9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

This is a tuition-based course.
Tuition for non-State participants: $225


Virtual Resource Table

The following links and documents represent materials made available at the resource table during the class.

Explaining America Reading List
Summary of 2010 U.S. Census

State Department Resources

Relevant FAM References

Internet Resources

Articles of Interest

State Department Intranet Resource Links


The information provided is FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY and in no way constitutes an endorsement, expressed or implied, by the Department of State. Links to websites outside the U.S. federal government or the use of trade, firm, or corporation names are for the convenience of the user and do not constitute an official endorsement or approval of any private sector website, product, service, or privacy policy.


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