The relationship between self -report and behavioral observation indices of multicultural counseling competence

Diane Eve Lewis, Fordham University


Changing demographics in the United States have stirred an increase in attention to multicultural counseling issues. Counseling professionals have questioned whether current training programs adequately prepare counseling students to work with individuals from a culturally diverse client population. Specific competencies have been identified and enumerated. The need for training has been emphasized by professionals and professional organizations. The availability of training in existing counseling psychology programs and internships has been examined. As a result, the measurement and evaluation of multicultural counseling competencies has become increasingly important to counseling psychologists and other professionals who offer counseling services to culturally diverse clients. In recent years 1 supervisor evaluation and 3 self-report instruments have been developed to measure dimensions of the multicultural counseling construct. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between behavioral evaluation and self-report in the measurement of this construct. The relationship between self-report and behavioral evaluation was examined across differences in training level. The existence of a multicultural counseling competence construct, distinct from general counseling competence, as observed and distinguished by expert judges, was also examined. Participants for this study were master's level counseling students and doctoral level students in counseling psychology programs from 3 northeastern universities. The Multicultural Counseling Knowledge and Awareness Scale (MCKAS) was used as a self-report measure of multicultural counseling competency and the Cross Cultural Counseling Inventory-R (CCCI-R) was used as an objective behavioral measure. The Counselor Rating Form-Short Version (CRF-S) was used as a measure of general counseling competence. Two multicultural counseling experts rated participants' counseling response to an interactive video of a client presenting cultural/racial issues during a counseling session. Participants viewed and responded to a video of an African American or a White Confederate client. Both clients presented an identical script. The experts used their ratings to complete a CCCI-R and a CRF-S for each participant. Correlations between the MCKAS subscale scores, the CCCI-R total score, and the CRF-S total score were used to test hypotheses. Results were examined, limitations enumerated, and implications to the field of counseling psychology and for future research were discussed.

Subject Area

School counseling|Bilingual education|Ethnic studies|Multicultural Education|Sociology

Recommended Citation

Lewis, Diane Eve, "The relationship between self -report and behavioral observation indices of multicultural counseling competence" (2004). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI3134441.