Unit 13: Multicultural Theory Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Unit 13: Multicultural Theory Deck (14):

Describe the six multicultural counselling and therapy propositions

1) MCT is a meta-theory of counselling and psychotherapy. It is a theory about theories and offers an organizational framework for understanding the numerous helping approaches humankind has developed. Recognizes that theories of counselling and psychotherapy developed in the Western world, and those indigenous helping models intrinsic to other non-western cultures, are neither inherently “right“ or “wrong“ nor “good“ or “bad“. Rather, holds that each theory represents a different worldview

2) counsellor and client identities are formed and embedded in multiple levels of experiences (individual, group, and Universal) and contexts (individual, family, and cultural). The totality and interrelationship of experiences and contexts need to be considered in any treatment.
- although we are unique individuals, we share commonalties with our multicultural reference group (cultural, racial/ethnic, gender, religion, sexual orientation, etc.) as well as the universal identity that we are all human beings. These levels of identity are fluid and ever-changing so that the salience of one over the other is also changing.

3) cultural identity development is a major determinant of both counsellor and client attitudes toward the self, others of the same group, others of a different group, and the dominant group. These attitudes, which may be manifested in affective and behavioural dimensions, are strongly influenced not only by cultural variables, but by the dynamics of a dominant-subordinate relationship among culturally different groups. The level or stage of racial/culture identity influences how clients and counsellors define the problem and dictates what they believe to be appropriate counselling and therapy goals and processes

4) counselling and therapy‘s effectiveness is enhanced when the counsellor uses techniques, strategies, and goals consistent with the life experiences and cultural values of the client. No single helping approach or intervention strategy is equally effective across all populations and life situations. The ultimate goal of multicultural counsellor and therapist training is to expand the repertoire of helping responses available to the professional, regardless of theoretical orientation

5) MCT stresses the importance of multiple helping roles developed by many culturally different groups in society. Conventional counselling and psychotherapy are only one approach of many theoretical techniques and strategies available to helping professionals. These approaches extend beyond one-on-one therapy and involve helping strategies, systems intervention, and prevention approaches developed by family, community, and larger social units

6) The liberation of consciousness is a basic goal of MCT. Whereas self-actualization, discovery of how the past affects the present, or behavioural change have been traditional goals of western psychotherapy and counseling, MCT emphasizes the importance of expanding personal, family, group, and organizational consciousness of self-in-relation, family-in-relation, and organization-in-relation. Thus, MCT is ultimately contextual in orientation and also draws on traditional methods of healing from many cultures


Describe acquiring competencies in multicultural counselling

Effective counsellors understand their own cultural conditioning, the conditioning of their clients, and the Sociopolitical system of which they are a part. Involves challenging the values we hold and how such values are likely to influence our practice with diverse clients.

Beliefs and attitudes: effective counsellors have moved from being culturally unaware to ensuring that their personal biases, values, or problems will not interfere with their ability to work with clients who are culturally different from them. Aware of their positive and negative emotional reactions toward other racial and ethnic groups. Seek to examine and understand the world from the vantage point of their clients. Respect clients religious and spiritual beliefs and values. Comfortable with differences. Rather than maintaining that their cultural heritage is superior, they are able to accept and value cultural diversity.

Knowledge: effective practitioners possess certain knowledge – know specifically about their own racial and cultural heritage and how it affects them personally and professionally. Because they understand the dynamics of oppression, racism, discrimination, and stereotyping, they are in a position to detect their own racist attitudes, beliefs, and feelings. Do not impose their values and expectations, avoid stereotyping, understand that external Socio political forces influence all groups. Aware of institutional barriers that prevent minorities from utilizing the mental health services available. Seek resources when needed.

Skills and interventions and strategies: effective counsellors have acquired certain skills and working with culturally diverse populations. Take responsibility for educating their clients to the way the therapeutic process works, including matters such as goals, expectations, legal rights, and the counsellors orientation. Counselling is enhanced when practitioners use methods and strategies and define goals consistent with the life experiences and cultural values of their clients. Modify and adapt interventions to accommodate cultural differences. Become actively involved with minority individuals outside office setting


A general goal of education and, by extension, of counselling and therapy as well. Focussed on the liberation of the individual from personal, social, and economic oppression.


Many clients come to therapy blaming themselves for their conditions. The counsellors task is to liberate these clients from self-blame, encourage them to see their issues in a social context, and facilitate personal action to better their situation.


Describe the Afrocentric worldview in multicultural counselling

How does it differ from the North American Eurocentric world view?

Proposes that the African-American experience in United States continues African history and culture. This worldview is holistic, emotionally vital, inter-dependent, and oriented toward collective survival. Emphasizes an oral tradition, uses a “being“ time orientation, focusses on harmonious blending and cooperation, and is highly respectful of the role of the elderly.

In contrast, the North American Eurocentric worldview tends to divide the world into discrete, “knowable” parts; Handles emotion somewhat carefully, even to the point of emotional repression; focusses on self-actualization and independence as a goal of life; emphasizes the clarity and precision of the written word; is oriented toward a linear “doing” of time; stresses individuation any difference rather than collaboration; and is more oriented toward youth than toward the elderly.

Neither frame of reference or worldview is right or wrong. Rather, it represents a way of constructing the world and making meaning. What can be harmful is to impose an Afrocentric frame on a Franco-American client or to impose a Eurocentric framework on an African-American client.


Describe the steps of Nwachuku’s afrocentric theory development

1. Examine the culture itself. What are important personal and interpersonal characteristics in this culture?
- this goal entails field research, interviews with those in the cultural group, and reading from an anthropological frame of reference. For example, how decisions are made, developmental progressions, an individual versus group orientation, attitude toward change, key issues especially in relation to power, and how language is used

2. Identify concrete skills and strategies that can be used in helping relationships.
- for example, the natural helping style of the group
- for example, the Igbo often work to solve personal problems by telling a story or through metaphor, therefore drawing out the clients story using empathic listening skills is a central part of helping in Igbo theory

3. Test the new helping theory and its skills in action


This therapy is aimed at assisting clients to discover meaning in their lives and repair damaged relationships with others. This system seeks to help clients move from narrow self-centeredness to awareness of how the individual was and is formed by important relationships. Therapy points out that a narrow focus on the self leads to neurotic and painful outcomes.

Naikan therapy

For example, most depressed clients in North America focus very much on themselves and can benefit from focussing outward and seeing themselves in a relational contacts


This type of counselling seeks to learn how clients life histories affect their present experiences. Theory was generated from a multicultural framework in Japan by Tamase, and draws on past and present strengths and working on and resolving problematic life issues. Integrates Japanese Naikan therapy, Ericksons life-span theory, and developmental counselling and therapy theory

Introspective developmental counselling IDC


Describe some of the aspects of introspective developmental counselling IDC

Making meaning from the past – the goals of IDC are in some ways similar to the psychodynamic formulations in that the past is believed to affect the present. However avoid giving theoretical interpretations for the client, rather interviewer simply listens and helps the client review the past.


Describe the essence of consciousness-raising in multicultural counselling

The essence is group discussion of stories, which can help individuals plan action for the future.


Describe integrative life patterning in multicultural counselling

A decisional counselling model that raises consciousness of multicultural issues. More relational and comprehensive than most decisional theories, and provides a useful framework for considering the importance and place of the decisional process in professional counselling and therapy

The lifelong process of identifying our primary needs, roles, and goals and the consequent integration of these within ourselves, our work, and our family. A comprehensive model of decision counselling in which individuals make decisions about their total development – physical, intellectual, social/emotional, vocational,/career, sexual, and spiritual.

The concept of patterning puts emphasis on relationships and life span issues. A decisional focus tends to emphasize outcomes, whereas patterning stresses that decisions are a process and are made contextually in relation to others – the community and society at large


What are the four major life patterns of the integrative life patterns model in multicultural counselling

Loving, learning, labor, and leisure. These major life roles are the expression of life patterns. In each of these areas, individuals make decisions. An decision in one area can affect the other. Ex.- a decision for labour or work effects present and future decisions in other areas in that it can result in less time for relationships, learning, and leisure. Expands decisional theory by pointing out the systemic impact of any decision


Several models of cultural identity development are described in the readings. Compare the five stages of cultural identity development theory with the four stages of identity development theory for European-North American counselors. What common themes emerge?

Cultural identity self-development represents a cognitive, emotional, and behavioural progression and expansion through identifiable and measurable levels are stages of consciousness. These stages appear to follow a sequence of:
1) naivety and embedded awareness of self as cultural being- individual has little focussed awareness of self as a cultural being. Most clearly represented by children who do not distinguish skin colour as an important feature.
2) an encounter with reality of cultural issues- despite lack of contact or efforts to shield oneself from oppression and discrimination, the individual encounters experiences in the environment that clearly demonstrate that the earlier naïve view was inadequate
3) The naming of these cultural issues- The act of naming is transformative
4) reflection on the meaning of self as a cultural being- The development of a keener awareness of identity.
5) some form of internalization and multiperspective thought about self-in-system- The individual develops pride in self and awareness of others. Recognizes worthwhile dimensions of predominant culture and fights those aspects that represent racism and other forms of oppression. Able to view the world through multiple frames of reference.

Identity development theory for European-North American counsellors and therapists:
1) pre-exposure – the white counsellor trainee has not thought about counselling and therapy as a multicultural phenomenon. May engage in unconscious racism and sexism or, more positively, try to treat all clients the same.
2) exposure- when multicultural issues are introduced, the therapist learns about cultural differences and matters of discrimination and oppression and realizes that previous educational experiences have been incomplete. At this stage may become perturbed and confused by the many incongruities that exist.
3) Zealotry or defensiveness – faced with the challenge of multicultural issues, may respond in different ways. Some become angry and active proponents of multiculturalism, another common response to the incongruities experienced is to retreat into quiet defensiveness. Criticisms of European-American culture, the system, and therapeutic theory are taken personally – passive recipients of information who retreat back into the predictability of white culture.
4) integration – the counsellor requires a respect for and awareness of cultural differences and becomes aware of personal family and cultural history and how this might affect the interview and treatment plan. There is an acceptance that one cannot know all dimensions of multicultural counselling and therapy at once, and plans are made for a lifetime of learning.


Describe developmental mapping in multicultural counselling

Helps counsellor understand how client has generated key construct systems and beliefs about the world. Reviews life stages by asking the following questions:

1. Key environmental systems – focus here is on the individual and key environmental support systems. For example what was the family situation during this life stage, what important life events or stressors affected your family or caregivers during this period, what is the nature of family or extended family in your history, where did you obtain support during this stage?

2. Life stage developmental story – focus is on the individual recollections, although the recollections are usually in a context.
Tell me a story or significant event that stands out for you from this stage; what are additional stories from this stage

3. Multicultural issues – focus on the individual and how he or she relates the community and the multicultural environment.
How did gender, religion, ethnic/racial status, or other multicultural issues affect your development during this period; tell me a story you recall about the role of men or women, a religious figure, or ethnic racial figure; who were your heroes; who did you look up to and respect

4. How does the past relate to the present? The focus here is on balancing the individual with family and multicultural issues.
Given what we discussed during this time period, how does this relate your present life experience; do you see any patterns that relate to how you are now and how you relate to others; what do you see as the influence of family and culture on where you are now


What do emic and etic mean

Emic- focussed culture-specific approach

Etic- universal approach