Cultural competence in clinical psychology training: a qualitative investigation of student and academic experiences

Geerlings, Lennie R.C., Thompson, Claire L., Bouma, Ruth, and Hawkins, Russell (2018) Cultural competence in clinical psychology training: a qualitative investigation of student and academic experiences. Australian Psychologist, 53 (2). pp. 161-170.

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Objective: Recent years have seen a marked increase in attention to cultural competence in clinical psychology practice in Australia. While the body of literature on the need for cultural competence is expanding, this is the first study that analyses how cross-cultural training and practice is experienced and related to standardised models of cultural competence.

Method: Twelve participants (8 students and 4 academics; 9 females and 3 males, ages 22–57) in two Australian universities were interviewed on their experiences with cultural competence during clinical psychology training. Each semi-structured interview took about 30 min and focused on identifying the training experiences and needs for cultural competence.

Results: Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis of the transcripts delivered three master themes: experiences of culture, strategies for culturally competent practice, and experiences of cultural competence development.

Conclusions: Students and academics experienced a “western” bias in training, and consequently adopted a variety of strategies to adapt their practice with culturally non-western clients. These findings draw attention to the need for structured cultural competence development in professional training programs.

Item ID: 48863
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1742-9544
Keywords: clinical psychology education; cultural competence; cultural diversity; Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA); professional psychology
Date Deposited: 09 May 2017 03:45
FoR Codes: 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5203 Clinical and health psychology > 520302 Clinical psychology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9202 Health and Support Services > 920209 Mental Health Services @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920410 Mental Health @ 50%
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