GCU Culturally Diverse Counseling Discussion & Responses


Topic 6 DQ 1 (Obj. 6.1) DQ 1

Reflect on racial identity development models discussed in previous chapters of the text and discuss why it is reasonable to assume different types of treatment will be more or less effective with individuals of the same ethnic group.

This discussion question is informed by the following CACREP Standard(s):

2.F.2.d. The impact of heritage, attitudes, beliefs, understandings, and acculturative experiences on an individual’s views of others.

2.F.2.f. Help-seeking behaviors of diverse clients.


Jones-Smith, E. (2019). Culturally diverse counseling: Theory and practice. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications Inc. ISBN-13: 9781483388267



2 posts

Re: Topic 6 DQ 1 (Obj. 6.1)

It is reasonable to assume various types of treatment will influence clients of the same ethnic group differently because of the way cultural groups vary in what they value. Jones-Smith (2019) gives an example when referencing White Euro-Americans, that “while English Americans may view dependency or emotionality as undesirable, the Irish become upset because a family member makes a scene” (p. 392). Even though individuals come from the same ethnic group their ancestry, places they live, and challenges they face differ (Jones-Smith, 2019). You can share the same ethnic group but have a different perspective on what behaviors are considered challenging and what behaviors are consider acceptable. Each client needs to be treated as an individual with unique needs and struggles. For example, if someone comes from a Euro-American cultural background, that does not mean they have the same spiritual practices or religious beliefs. Maybe one client is atheist, and another is Christian. A shared ethnic group does not equate to shared world views, motivations, and approaches to treatment plans or methods of counseling. Jones-Smith (2019) denotes “While some clients might respond best to culturally specific strategies, others do better when the emphasis is on universal issues of human functioning (Velez et al., 2015 as cited by Jones-Smith, 2019, p. 12).

2 posts

Re: Topic 6 DQ 1 (Obj. 6.1)

Therapeutic treatments are the framework of working with clients. They give us a starting point and guidelines to help the continuation of forward progression. It used to be that therapists would pick one technique to work with, such as individual therapy, cognitive therapy or traditional psychotherapy. As research has expanded, it has been found that a combination of therapies are necessary when working with people, even people within the same culture.

In an article by Robinder Bedi (2018), it is discussed how culturally adapted counseling and psychotherapy (CACP), specifically for non-Western cultures, can be effective depending on the level of acculturation of the client. Plainly speaking, when we take Western practices and adapt them to a person’s culture, there is a greater chance for effectiveness of that therapy. It cannot be expected to be completely effective because some people retain more of their indigenous culture after moving to a foreign one and others completely assimilate. Cultural identity can also be seen as a framework, with many traits being consistent and others not. This will cause disparity in counseling techniques and strategies. Counselors should build goals and select techniques based on the individual, using ethnic and cultural traits as guidelines.

2 posts

Re: Topic 6 DQ 1 (Obj. 6.1)

One of the most important methods of using counseling models with clients of different racial identity includes being culturally sensitive by engaging with the person’s past and present, medically, mentally and culturally (Jones-Smith, 2019).

While using this method, the counselor must keep in mind that positive racial identity development is greatly beneficial for a person’s progress forward (Grantham & Ford, 2003), and that the way the counselor engages with the client may impact that, especially if their client is younger. Case examples and studies have shown this repeatedly (Jones-Smith, 2019). Counselors must know about “normative methodological approaches,” to not only explore issues related to racial disparity but also to find the one that supports the client for their best healing (Lee & Tracey, 2005).

One example of a method that practices cultural sensitivity, especially if working with children, is to have picture books with positive representation of their ethnicity (Wee et al., 2021). This is one method that could help a child see themselves and their heritage in a more positive light; but one must remember that this may not work for all and be able to keep one’s mind open to other possibilities.

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