Multicultural Counseling and Social Justice Competencies
Multicultural Counseling and Soicial Justice Competencies Malcom X MuralPicture of Tibetan Woman
Home Page Image
Photo of SFU Multicultural MuralPhoto of Indigenous WomanClose-Up Photo of SFU Multicultural Mural
Multicultural Competencies Overview

Multicultural Counseling Competencies (Sue, Arredondo & McDavis, 1992; Arredondo et al., 1996) were developed within the context of research indicating that there were groups of clients who had been receiving substandard mental health services due to the lack of acknowledgment of the cultural factors related to counseling issues as well as due to discrimination on the part of the counseling providers.

The self-guided process in this web tool is organized around three primary competency components, and within each of these three areas, the competencies address awareness, knowledge, and skill.


Follow each link and read the summary provided for each of the three competency areas before continuing.

Contributions to the Cultural Competencies

Each of these documents contributed to the enhancement of cultural competence.

  • Position paper provided the initial framework for cultural competencies in counseling: Sue et al. (1982)
  • “A Call to the Profession” for the need and framework for cultural competencies in counseling: Sue, Arredondo, and McDavis (1992)
  • Elaboration and Operationalization of the Competencies by providing specific examples, examples of measurable demonstrations, and strategies for enhancing competence: Arredondo et al. (1996)
  • Expansion of the competencies to include personal, professional, and institutional levels of cultural competence as well as recommendations to include cognitive, affective and behavioral modes of learning in competency development: Toporek and Reza (2001)
  • Clients’ perspectives highlighted in a qualitative examination of the relevance of cultural competence: Pope-Davis et al. (2001)
  • Multicultural guidelines for psychologists developed and adopted by American Psychological Association: APA (2003)
I have read the Competencies and am ready to continue to develop my Plan



welcome | developing competence | continuing education | resources | learning activities | about | user agreement | artwork | FAQs | feedback

©Rebecca L. Toporek (2008)