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A Qualitative Study of the Effect of Multicultural Training on Early Career Psychologists

5 December 2008


There has been significant momentum towards developing and enhancing the American Psychological Association CAP A) multicultural counseling guidelines CAP A, 2003); however, discrepancies exist between clinical psychology programs on how best to implement them. This study explores this dilemma by examining both the gaps in the literature and the narratives of early career psychologists' multicultural training experience. Ten participants are asked questions pertaining to their multicultural training experience from graduate school to the present. Qualitative·methods are used and analysis of the results reveals several themes. First, there is a general theme that participants were satisfied with their diversity training. Second, it is felt that the Pacific University, School of Professional Psychology (SPP) training is inadequate. The third theme consists of suggestions for improvements in diversity training. The fourth is a general theme across the ethnic minority participants about feeling marginalized in their graduate training. There is a fifth theme that white participants are afraid of being perceived as bigots. The sixth theme focuses on influence of peer reactions on participants' experience. The seventh theme consists of struggles with diversity training. The eighth theme is personal investment in diversity. Finally, the ninth theme encompasses participants ' experiences of anxiety when working cross culturally.


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