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Diversity COMP Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by

William James College COMP Diversity, Difference, and Inclusion

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.

Multic­ultural Counseling Overview

Broadens helping role (e.g., advocacy) and expands skills. Recognizes indivi­dual, group, and universal levels. Utilizes universal and cultur­e-s­pecific strate­gies. Balances indivi­dualism and collec­tivism. Focuses on both the client and client systems in pursuing change
Cultural Univer­sality vs. Cultural Relativism Etic: culturally universal (e.g., the concept of abnormal behavior) Emic: culturally specific
Compet­encies One Awareness of own assump­tions, values, & biases. Two Knowledge- have knowledge about specific groups; aware of instit­utional barriers that keep some margin­alized clients from seeking services. Three Skills- can use cultur­all­y-a­ppr­opriate interv­ention skills when working with different groups.
Essent­ialist Perspe­ctive: believes social categories are natural differ­ences; existing apart from social or cultural processes; identi­fying empiri­cally verifiable simila­rities among and differ­ences between people.
Constr­uct­ionist Perspe­ctive: believes social categories created by society rather than naturally occurring, Categories create social types rather than reveal them.
Lament­ation: focusing on remorse for discri­min­ati­on/bias that drive diversity efforts
Multic­ultural competence focuses on ways of doing therapy with clients while multic­ultural orient­ation focuses on ways of being
Cultural humility involves: developing mutual partne­rships that address power imbala­nces, interp­ersonal respect, awareness of one's limita­tions to unders­tanding a clients cultur­e/b­ack­gro­und­/ex­per­ience
Responses to Difference: Naming, Aggreg­ating, Dichot­omi­zation, Stigma­tiz­ation, Oppres­sing, and Creating Categories
White Fragility: discomfort and defens­iveness on the part of a white person when confronted by inform­ation about racial inequality and injustice
About 1/3 of African American are in jail, on parole, or on probation.
1/3 of Latino Americans drop out of high school

Barriers to Effective MCT

Cultur­e-bound values: Focusing on the indivi­dual: many cultures value collec­tiv­istic; Verbal­/em­oti­ona­l/b­eha­vioral expres­siv­eness
Class-­bound values: poor and working class people more likely to be labeled as mentally ill; premat­urely terminate therapy
Language: monoli­ngual societ­y--­expect standard English. Misund­ers­tan­dings related to cultural differ­ences in commun­ication might lead to difficulty establ­ishing trust and rapport
Stereo­types: rigid precon­ception held about a group, applied to all members of that group, ignores individual variat­ions.
Culturally Approp­riate Interv­ention Strategies Nonverbal Commun­ication- Ex: Proxemics, Kinesics, Parala­nguage, High-Low Context Commun­ica­tion.

Oppres­sion: Ethnoc­entric Monocu­ltu­ralism

Ethnoc­entric Monocu­ltu­ralism Belief in own culture’s superi­ority and has power to impose standards
Manife­station in instit­utions: unequal goals, status, & access to goods and services.
The Invisible Veil: values and beliefs (world­views) operate outside of conscious awareness; assume univer­sality.
Therap­eutic Impact Minority clients might be distru­stful of therap­ists, hide their true feelings, “test” the therap­ist’s trustw­ort­hiness.
Ways in which aspects of diversity and difference can affect psycho­logical proces­ses­/help- seeking behavior: Cultur­e-Bound Syndromes, Indigenous Healing, Shaman as Therapist

Ageism: the Elderly

Ageless self: is a core “real me” that continues despite physical and social change.
Subjective age: “feeling old” is a product of social compar­ison, physical health status, role involv­ement, and age norms.
Decrem­ent­alist view/Aging: after a period of maximal functi­oning, is all “downhill”
Develo­pment: Age-re­lated changes (gains and losses) throughout the lifespan.


Brief, everyday exchanges that send denigr­ating messages to members of a target group
Are subtle, uninte­nti­onal, and indirect; can be enacted verbally, nonver­bally, visually, behavi­orally;
Often enacted uncons­ciously and automa­tic­ally; represent uncons­cious and ingrained biased beliefs and attitudes
May seem innocent, but have long term damaging effects on the recipient
Microa­ssault: is overt and blatant discri­min­ation, intended to be deroga­tory; intent is clear to perpet­rator and recipient.
Microi­nsult: uninte­ntional behaviors or comments that convey rudeness and insens­iti­vity; insulting hidden message
Active backlash: engaging in discri­min­atory or harassing behavior in response to diversity initiative
Passive backlash: more subtle, such as being unwilling to engage in discus­sions about diversity, or not engaging with margin­alized people

Racism, Sexism, Hetero­sexism

Overt Sexism: blatant unfair treatment of women.
Covert Sexism: unequal and harmful treatment of women that’s hidden
Subtle sexism: unequal and unfair treatment that’s not recognized because it’s seen as normative and not unusual, Not deliberate or conscious
Aversive racism: subtle and uninte­ntional racism. Consci­ously endorse equality, but uncons­ciously hold anti-m­inority feelings that impact behavior.
Hetero­sexism: discri­min­ation or prejudice against gay people on the assumption that hetero­sex­uality is the normal sexual orient­ation. Can be overt or subtle

Disability and Physical Difference

Legal Definition (Americans with Disabi­lities Act—ADA) A physical or mental impairment which substa­ntially limits one or more of the major life activi­ties, a record of such an impair­ment, or being regarded as having such an impair­ment.
Moral Model: Unders­tands disability and physical difference within a religious context a punishment or blessing from God.
Medical Model: Views disability as a medical problem that resides within the indivi­dual.
Social Model: Views disability as socially constr­ucted. Ex: Gill’s Model of Disability Identity Develo­pment, Sue & Sue’s (2008) Model of Cultural Competence
Gill’s Model of Disability Identity Develo­pment (1997) Coming home: integr­ating with the disability community, Coming together: internally integr­ating their sameness and differ­entness (i.e., “good”­/no­n-d­isabled parts with “bad”/­dis­abled parts), Coming Out: integr­ating how they feel with how they present themselves Ten General Rules

Racial­/Cu­ltural Identity Develo­pment

R/CID Model: People of Color
Conformity Phase: prefer dominant group’s values & charac­ter­istics. Intern­alized racism. Resistance & Immersion Phase: completely endorse minori­ty-held values, reject dominant group’s values. Motive: eliminate oppression of own group. New self- definition is reactive to white culture. Intros­pection Phase: Positive, proactive self-d­efi­nition. Feelings associated with R & I stage were draining. Begin to question unequi­vocal acceptance of group views. Integr­ative Awareness Phase: security in self; good & bad in all cultures; more individual control & flexib­ility; commitment to ending all oppres­sion.
White Racial Identity Develo­pment
Naivete Phase: (prior to age 3) Neutral, curious, and open Conformity Phase: ethnoc­entric attitudes & beliefs Dissonance Phase: denial is challe­nged; guilt, shame, depres­sion, anger; some ration­alize their behavior, might retreat into white culture. Resistance & Immersion Phase: begin to challenge own racism; feel racial self- hatred, negative about being white Intros­pection Phase: no loner deny being white; less defens­iveness & guilt Integr­ative Awareness Phase: non-racist white identity emerges; self-f­ulf­illment Commitment to Antiracist Action Phase: most charac­terized by social action to end racism and oppression

Biraci­al/­Mul­tir­acial Identity Develo­pment

Maria Root’s Model 1. Accept the identity society assigns. Positive if person is satisfied with that identity, has family support, & is active in evidencing the identity. More fluid. 2. Identify with all/both racial groups. Good if person can relate well to positive aspects of both worlds.
3. Actively identify with a single racial group. The person, not society, makes this choice. Less fluid in changing situat­ions. 4. Identify with other mixed-race people.

Effects of Social Class

Life Events & Choices Education: amount and quality Life events: stressors and coping resources
Values Work (paying bills vs. self-f­ulf­ill­ment), Interp­ersonal relati­onships & associ­ations, Parenting (behav­ioral conformity vs. self-d­ire­ction), Education, Emotional expression
Myth of Upward Mobility: anyone can “get ahead” if they’re smart enough, motivated
Upward mobility causes an heightened sense of imposter syndrome
Imposter Syndrome: the persistent inability to believe that one's success is deserved or has been legiti­mately achieved as a result of one's own efforts or skills.
Effects of upward mobility: Alienation from family, Parents' mixed feelings of pride, betrayal, resent­ment., Varying degrees of parental encour­agement and emotional support
Upwardly mobile African Americans risk being regarded by other poor and working class African Americans as acting white

Religion & Mental Health

Much of the research exploring the relati­onship between religi­on/­spi­rit­uality and wellbeing has found positive correl­ations
Religi­osity: adherence to beliefs and practices of an organized religion or church
Spirit­uality: describes transc­end­ental relati­onship between person and higher being
Most Arab Americans are Christian, People minimize discri­min­ation against Jews because many are well-e­ducated and financ­ially secure, Someone could identify as Jewish based on religion (including conver­sion) or culture.


Higher rates of Major Depression reported by gay men, especially earlier in their identity develo­pment.
Elevated rates of Major Depres­sion, Genera­lized Anxiety Disorder and substance abuse among lesbian and gay youth.
Intern­alized homophobia and Gender Dysphoria are a concern
Gender is psycho­logical while Sex is biological
Pansexual: when a person is not limited to sexual choice with regard to biological sex, gender, or gender identity
Transg­ender: when a person's gender identity does not match one's biological sex
Ritter's Model of LGB Identity Develo­pment:
Integrates various models (Cass, Troiden, Grace, and Coleman)
Phase 1: Same sex attrac­tions are not in conscious awareness, Feel socially different, alienated, alone, fearful. Depression is common, Might engage in proble­matic behaviors like substance abuse Interv­entions: do risk assess­ment, treat depression
Phase 2: Begin to question their own sexual identity, and to feel sexually different, Confusion is common. “Possibly” gay Interv­entions: empathic explor­ation of confusion, fear, anxiety. Avoid premature labeling. Provide accurate and affirming info, dispel harmful myths, Reframe being LGBQ as positive.
Phase 3: “probably” gay, Begin to connect more with other LGB people, reduce isolation, May report feeling like a teen again Interv­entions: continue to assist with coming out; role play difficult coming out scenarios.
Phase 4: accept (rather than tolerate) new identity. Can now refer to client as LGBQ. Interv­entions: assist with decision making
Phase 5: might immerse in LGBQ community, sever ties with hetero­sexuals Interv­entions: validate anger re: oppression and pride as LGBQ.
Troiden’s Model of Identity Develo­pment
Stage 1 Sensit­ization: occurs before puberty, involves being margin­alized and made to feel different from peers
Stage 2 Identify Confusion: occurs usually in adoles­cence, begin to recognize feelings and behaviors that could be labeled homosexual
Stage 3 Identity Assumption occurs on average for males at ages 19-21 and for females at ages 21-23. See a reduction in social isolation and an increase in contact with other lesbians and gay men. Task is to learn to manage social stigma: coping techni­ques. Capitu­ali­zation: negative view of homose­xuality but acknow­ledges his or her membership in this group, Minstr­ali­zation: The person adopts stereo­typic and often exagge­rated homosexual mannerisms and behavior, Passing, Group alignm­ent­/im­mersion
Stage 4 Commitment: integr­ation of homose­xua­lity; becomes a state or way of being, rather than a descri­ption of sexual behavior


Stigma associated with seeking mental health services, Male dominated, Reinte­gration a concern
Recomm­end­ations for Working with Veterans: Don’t over-p­ath­olo­gize, Explore pre-mi­litary history, Become knowle­dgeable about the concept of post-t­rau­matic growth (PTG), Obtain military history if relevant to presenting concern or doing an intake, Show empathy and connect authen­tically

Social Justice Counseling

Organi­zations are microcosms of the larger society; reflec­tions of monocu­ltural values
Failure to have a balanced perspe­ctive between person and system focus can result in: false attrib­ution of the problem. An ineffe­ctive and inaccurate treatment plan that can be harmful to the client. If the system is the problem, must work to eliminate the unhealthy system vs. adjust the person to a sick situation.

Breaking Cycles of Resistance

Questi­oning oneself: “what am I missing in this situat­ion?” “how might my desire to be proven right (or innocent) influence my view of the other person or reality?” Is very difficult, because it involves taking risks when one most feels the need to protect one self.
Getting genuine support: identify people who can help you sort through your reactions and question your assump­tions about the situation, rather than someone who will just reinforce how you feel reinfo­rcement can be comfor­ting, but might deny you opport­unities for learning and for breaking the cycles
Shifting one’s mindset: from “You need to change” to “What can I change?”

Tripartite Model of Culture

Universal Level: human experi­ences
Group Level: simila­rities and differ­ences (gender, race, age, etc)
Individual Level: uniqueness (genetics, nonshared experi­ences)