Category: Cultural Diversity/Vulnerable Populations

Special Session

Invited Address 1 - Cultural Competency: Political Correctness or Necessity?

Friday, November 17
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Location: Sapphire Ballroom CDGH, Level 4, Sapphire Level

Keywords: Cultural Diversity/ Vulnerable Populations | Race / Ethnicity | Psychotherapy Outcome
Presentation Type: Special Session
Level of Familiarity: Basic

This presentation addresses five basic questions:
1. What is the nature of cultural competency research? I argue that it is controversial—rooted in larger racial/ethnic issues that have plagued society.
2. Do mental health disparities exist among ethnic minority groups? If so, have they persisted over time? Perhaps cultural competency may not address a real problem or maybe highlighting disparities is simply responding to political correctness rather than substance.
3. Is cultural competency effective? If so, what works? Why has it been so difficult to translate cultural competency research into practice? I maintain that subtle and systemic biases have hindered the value of research in addressing these questions.
4. What kinds of dilemmas do we face in trying to draw conclusions about cultural competency?
5. What implications can be drawn from research on cultural competency? I believe that cultural competency research provides an understanding of the various threats that currently impinge on psychological science.

Learning Objectives:


Recommended Reading: Smith, T.B., Rodriquez, M.D., & Bernal, B. (2011). Adapting psychotherapy to the individual patient. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 67, 166-175.
Sue, S., Zane, N., Nagayama Hall, G. C., & Berger, L. K. (2009). The case for cultural competency in psychotherapeutic interventions. Annual Review of Psychology, 60 (1), 525-548.
Critically examined the research regarding mental health disparities among ethnic minority groups and the effectiveness of cultural competency interventions.

Stanley Sue

Emeritus Distinguished Professor of Clinical Psychology at Palo Alto University and Emeritus Distinguished Professor of Psychology at UC Davis

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Invited Address 1 - Cultural Competency: Political Correctness or Necessity?



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