This paper is all about the importance of empowering the counselors to become more multi-culturally competent therapists in carrying out their assessment procedures. This is for the counselors to ensure security among their clients who are living and trying to adjust in a culturally diverse society. The United States is one good example of a society having a mixture of the different cultures and subcultures of different races and therefore, having varied sexual orientation preference, language, and spiritual beliefs.
Thus, these varied characteristics shall challenge the counselors to devise ways on how to deal with the diverse factors which might have an influence on how they carry out their assessment or evaluation of their clients. The focus of this paper then is to discuss the aforementioned factors which should be controlled by the counselor for the purpose of maintaining a clear and objective interpretation of results. Cultural Diversity Introduction
Cultural diversity is ubiquitous and continuously prevailing in the United States. Various races like Indian Americans, White Americans, Hispanics and non-Hispanics, Latinos and Latinas, and African Americans are some of the examples of these different mixtures of culture and subculture in the American society. The minorities should therefore adjust into the majority or the mainstream in order to cope and adjust in a foreign place if they choose to stay and live there for long.
Cultural diversity therefore, is an eminent scenario in the United States which has to be addressed by the district counselors in order to objectively assess and deal with clients having diverse cultural backgrounds and thus, suggests their difference in their sexual orientation, language, and spiritual beliefs. Impact of Cultural Diversity issues on the Assessment process
In the counseling practice, cultural diversity issues including the clients’ several characteristics like sexual orientation, language, and spirituality have an impact on the execution of the assessment process. For instance, the service of the counselors should not be limited to the homogenous sexual orientation or the same sex eroticism and sexual preference for a mate or partner (e. g. , men and women alone) (Slife, 2002). Rather, it should be available to all sexes: men, women, gay, and lesbians, regardless of their culture, and it should always be an objective evaluation.
Moreover, in order to avoid bias in assessment, counselors should also devise ways on how to carry out therapeutic sessions wherein the difference of language orientation among the counselor and client should not become a barrier in the therapeutic relationship, assessment process, and effective communication or the interpretation of results. To carry this out, it is important that a counselor should understand the meaning of language, which is the medium used for communication and assessment of test results used for the counselor-client relationship.
Language should be understood by both the client and the counselor as the expression of the distinct culture for every individual in a diverse culture. Family, friends, and acquaintances of the client for example, are also encouraged to participate in communicating by using one’s desired language with the counselor to achieve an integrated generalization out of the collated information about the client.
If language diversity is the case, counselors could contact agencies to provide themselves with trained, qualified, and trustworthy language interpreters who would aid the counselors, the client, and the family to understand each other by communicating effectively (Hood & Johnson, 2007). On the other hand, spirituality or the religious upbringing of culturally different client plays a vital role in determining the cognitive and social, and emotional fractions of the client’s evaluation of one’s personality.
Assessment procedures done by counselors are affected in such a way that counselors put the client’s spiritual beliefs into consideration in the process of assessment. Counselors investigate whether the client’s cultural background has a relationship with the test results for the purpose of ensuring an objective interpretation of results and for preventing bias findings. Conclusion Increase of cultural diversity across the globe and in the United States imposes a necessity for the counselors to improve their assessment procedures.
Improvisation of the evaluation practice shall include the counselor’s initiative to consider, address, and control the factors like sexual orientation, language, and spirituality of clients that may or may not have an impact on the interpretation and communication of test results. Counselors should be more multi-culturally open and competent by being able to address the needs of clients living in a culturally diverse society.
Counselors, in the assessment process should be more objective, rational, and reliable while carrying out their techniques, communicating and interpreting the test results in order to make sound judgments that would help their clients achieve their goal in the therapeutic relationship. Reference Hood, A. , & Johnson, R. (2007). Assessment in Counseling: A guide to the use of Psychological assessment procedures. American Counseling Association. Slife, B. (2002). Taking Sides. Guilford, Connecticut: McGraw-Hill Companies.