Write an essay discussing the multicultural counseling movement has made great strides over the past few years and has gone beyond simple “awareness” of cultural differences to an emphasis on the development of specific attitudes and skills related to counseling people from diverse backgrounds.
Counselors use a variety of skills and methods to help someone. In this assessment, you will learn to identify some of these skills as well as have an opportunity to practice listening skills. You may find that simply listening is harder than it sounds.
In Part One of this assessment, you will watch a video and reflect on what you observed. In Part Two, practice your listening skills with a partner. After you complete these exercises, write a 3-4-page paper that reflects what you learned during these experiences.
Watch the Excerpts from Initial Counseling Sessions video presentation and observe the following:
How the therapeutic alliance is being formed.
The attending and listening skills being used.
How the client is responding to the therapist.
Which counselor strategies seem to be most effective with the client.
You are encouraged to watch the video more than once and take notes since the answers to these questions will be incorporated into your paper.
For the second part of this assessment, find a partner with whom you can practice your listening skills. This is not a mock therapy session, so the volunteer should not discuss a personal problem or issue. Instead your partner can talk about any topic they choose for 3 minutes. You should actually time the session.
Your task is to simply listen to the person without interjecting anything about yourself. For this first round, you should also not ask any questions or even respond to your partner verbally. You can however use nonverbal behavior to indicate that you are actively listening.
For the second round, your partner should continue talking for another 5 minutes. They can talk about the same topic from the first round or a new one. Prior to beginning, explain that you will be interacting a little bit more to practice your counseling skills. However, the goal is still to listen to what is being shared, not to interject information about yourself. Focus on basic attending and listening skills while still keeping in mind the ultimate objective, which is to simply listen.
At the conclusion of the session, ask your partner for feedback. You can use some of the following questions:
What was it like to talk without getting verbal feedback (first round)?
Did you feel heard for the second round? If so, what made you feel as though you were heard?
Was there anything in either round that could have helped you to feel more like you were being listened to?
Overall, what was this activity like?
The first step in addressing the issue of cultural competency in counseling was to raise awareness about the importance of cultural differences. This involved recognizing the different cultural values, beliefs, and practices of diverse groups, and acknowledging that these differences could affect the counseling process. However, awareness alone was not sufficient to address the issue. The next step was to develop specific attitudes and skills related to counseling people from diverse backgrounds.
One important development in the multicultural counseling movement has been the recognition that cultural competence is not a static concept, but rather a dynamic process that requires ongoing ed
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Another important development in the multicultural counseling movement has been the emphasis on the importance of cultural humility. Cultural humility is the ability to maintain an open and reflective stance toward the client’s cultural background, while recognizing one’s own limitations and biases. This requires a willingness to learn from the client, to ask questions, and to be flexible in one’s approach to counseling.
The multicultural counseling movement has also emphasized the importance of developing specific skills related to working with diverse clients. This includes the ability to communicate effectively across cultural differences, to adapt counseling techniques to the client’s cultural background, and to understand the impact of cultural factors on the client’s mental health.
To support the development of culturally competent counseling, many organizations have developed guidelines and standards for multicultural counseling. The American Counseling Association, for example, has developed the Multicultural Counseling Competencies, which provide a framework for developing and assessing cultural competence in counseling. Other organizations, such as the Association for Multicultural Counseling and Development, have developed training programs and resources to support counselors in their efforts to develop cultural competence.
In conclusion, the multicultural counseling movement has made great strides over the past few years in addressing the need for culturally competent counseling. It has moved beyond simple “awareness” of cultural differences to an emphasis on the development of specific attitudes and skills related to counseling people from diverse backgrounds. The emphasis on cultural humility, ongoing education and training, and the development of specific skills has helped to create a more effective and responsive counseling practice for diverse clients. The movement’s continued evolution will be essential in meeting the ever-changing needs of a diverse society.