Multicultural Counseling Essay

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Introduction Research shows clients from ethnic minority groups are the least likely to make use of counseling services. One explanation for this is that it is an ethnocentric activity, based on the values of the white middle classes, an approach which can alienate those from other cultures. A multicultural approach to counseling challenges the assumption that one style of interviewing is transferable to all clients. This section examines a theory of multicultural counseling; definitions; and models of multiculturalism; highlighting the implications these have for guidance practitioners. Theory of multicultural counseling and therapy (MCT) Most career counseling and guidance practitioners would readily acknowledge that each client is unique, and that individual differences must be accepted and respected. However, practice - based on theories taught during initial training and subsequently developed into 'action theories' in the field - often reflects the assumption that a particular interviewing approach is transferable across a wide range of clients. Multicultural counseling challenges this view. Sue et al (1996) propose a theory of multicultural counseling and therapy (MCT). This is considered necessary because of the inadequacies of current theories informing current counseling practice. These theories operate from both explicit and implicit assumptions that guide their practical application, and so an `assumption audit' is presented as the starting point for the authors developing MCT as an essential starting point for understanding this new theory. It's suggested (p2) that we all conduct a `critical and independent audit' of assumptions which currently underlay our counseling practice, and compare it with the one presented below. Underlying Assumptions: * Current theories of counseling and psychotherapy inadequately describe, explain, predict and
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