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Cultural Competence and Ethics Essay Sample

Cultural Competence and Ethics Pages
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Multicultural psychology is fairly new to the field of psychology and is constantly changing and improving. Some current emerging issues that of concern within multicultural psychology are researchers being cultural competent and the ethics involved when working with a diverse group of people. America is a very culturally diverse place and culture should be taken into consideration when performing a research study. Learning to be culturally competent can also help within the workplace and during social activities.

Cultural competency involves three broad dimensions. These dimensions are; the therapist’s cultural knowledge, the therapist’s attitudes and beliefs toward culturally different subjects and self-understanding, and the therapist’s skills and use of culturally appropriate interventions (P. Narra, R. Singer, Z. Li, S. Ash, & J. Esposito, 2012). According to the American Psychology Association Guidelines cultural competence includes the assessment of cultural identity, acculturation, and family dynamics (P. Narra, R. Singer, Z. Li, S. Ash, & J. Esposito, 2012). Other professional organizations such as the American Psychiatric Association have also taken note of the importance of cultural competence (P. Narra, R. Singer, Z. Li, S. Ash, & J. Esposito, 2012). Cultural competence also will help to keep us morally ethical as well.

Ethics are important to protect the test subjects as well as the researchers. There are laws in effect to help protect against discrimination among minorities within society in areas such as the workplace as well as research studies. All things should be in order before summiting a research study to make sure that all cultures are considered and not just Euro-American cultures. It is a psychologist’s job to make sure that
cultural competence is met for all cultures involved in order to also be considered ethically safe. Ethics can make or break a research study. Making sure you know the law about ethics and being culturally competent will make sure that validity is achieved in research studies.

Remember that earlier it was discussed that cultural competence and ethics go hand in hand, so we would be correct in saying that psychologists are ethically obligated to make sure of their own cultural competence (W. B. Johnson, J. Barnett, N. Elman, L. Forrest, & N. Kaslow, 2012).When performing research studies it is easy for a researcher to impose their culture on the study. Being culturally competent of all cultures involved will help the researchers be more effective in their studies. One way to help researchers be culturally competent is to educate them. Offering classes on multicultural psychology to all psychology students and also classes on the different cultures will help researchers be more informed about their subjects (W. B. Johnson, J. Barnett, N. Elman, L. Forrest, & N. Kaslow, 2012). There also should be training available on ethics and the laws surrounding ethics as well (W. B. Johnson, J. Barnett, N. Elman, L. Forrest, & N. Kaslow, 2012).

Professional psychology has begun to move toward competency-based education; training and credentialing (W. B. Johnson, J. Barnett, N. Elman, L. Forrest, & N. Kaslow, 2012). These trainings have ongoing assessments in order to ensure competency throughout a psychologist’s career. These trainings and studies help the psychologist to communicate with members of the public about available services and the changes they hope to make in the world (W. B. Johnson, J. Barnett, N. Elman, L. Forrest, & N. Kaslow, 2012). Today educators and supervisors remain aware of the struggles with competency and the difficulties it takes to cognitively wrap ones brain around all the diversity in American culture today.

Having professional competency will not be without challenges. There will be plenty of mountains to climb. Multicultural research shows that western cultures are less likely to think about others perspectives when interpreting others behaviors (W. B. Johnson, J. Barnett, N. Elman, L. Forrest, & N. Kaslow, 2012). Psychologists must overcome the western culture perspective and open their minds to other cultures. They must help the communities that they work within to accept of all the cultures within their community (W. B. Johnson, J. Barnett, N. Elman, L. Forrest, & N. Kaslow, 2012). Cultural competency also requires moral maturity and trust in one’s colleagues and most importantly education (W. B. Johnson, J. Barnett, N. Elman, L. Forrest, & N. Kaslow, 2012).

Although it has been made very clear how important cultural competence is to society there has been little research regarding this matter (P. Narra, R. Singer, Z. Li, S. Ash, & J. Esposito, 2012). Many researchers have shown that ethic minority communities have had trouble gaining access to culturally competent health services. These barriers can lead to misdiagnoses, lack of credibility of the provider, and bias and/or discrimination (P. Narra, R. Singer, Z. Li, S. Ash, & J. Esposito, 2012). Although multicultural competence has shown some positive therapeutic results research has shown that perspectives and practices in psychotherapy with minorities have received little attention (P. Narra, R. Singer, Z. Li, S. Ash, & J. Esposito, 2012).

As multicultural psychology continues you to grow so will cultural competence within our communities. Educating researchers, up and coming researchers, and the community of our diverse world and its many cultures is a step closer to a resolution. In conclusion, education on cultural competence and staying up to date on the laws regarding ethics will keep us ethically moral and respected by the communities with which w e work.

References

Johnson, B., Barnett, J., Elman, N., Forrest, L., & Kaslow, N. (2012). The Competent
Community, Toward a Vital Reformulation of Professional Ethics. Retrieved
December 11, 2012, from ebschost.com
Narra, P., Singer, R., Li, Z., Ash, S., & Esposito, J. (2012). Individual and Systemic Factors in
Clinicians’ Self-Perceived Cultural Competence. Retrieved December 11, 2012,
from
Ebschost.com.

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