Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Name

Clinical Psychology

Department or School/College

Department of Psychology

Committee Chair

Christine Fiore

Commitee Members

Bryan Cochran, Anisa Goforth, David Schuldberg, Kirsten Murray


experiential, multicultural, supervision


University of Montana


Although much importance has been placed on training programs to develop multiculturally competent service providers, the question remains as to when and where clinicians acquire their multicultural competence (MCC). Currently, most training programs appear to focus on the development of multicultural awareness and knowledge, without adequate focus on skills. However, experientially based learning exercises are associated with skills development in many areas, including general clinical skills development. Thus, students who engage in higher levels of experiential learning in their multicultural training may rate themselves as more competent with multicultural skills than students with less frequent experiential learning. I hypothesize that experiential learning will moderate the strength of the association between multicultural training and multicultural skills competence. The present study examines the training experiences of clinical and counseling psychology doctoral students (N = 83), using students’ self-reports of multicultural training, experiential training exercises, as well as their ratings of perceived multicultural competence using the Multicultural Awareness, Knowledge, and Skills Survey (MAKSS-CE-R). While the proposed model was not significant (ΔR2 = .025, ΔF(1, 76) = 2.098, p = .152), experiential exercises did have a significant moderating effect on the relationship between students’ multicultural training and their estimated acquisition of multicultural skills competence (ΔR2 = .219, ΔF(1, 76) = 12.089, p = .001). Although more research is needed to better understand the role of experiential learning, these results bring into question the reliability of self-report in capturing multiculturally competent skills. Implications for training and practice are discussed.



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