Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: June 25, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963978 | Print ISBN: 9781412909280 | Online ISBN: 9781412963978| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Barriers to Cross-Cultural Counseling
When counseling culturally diverse clients, counselors will often encounter many obstacles or barriers. These barriers can stem from the counselor's lack of cultural knowledge to language differences between the counselor and client. Barriers to cross-cultural counseling can negatively influence the counseling relationship as well as the outcome of counseling. The literature has even linked these cultural barriers to the underutilization and premature termination of counseling services by ethnic minorities and low-income persons. An increasing awareness of these barriers has led to changes in counselor preparation and the delivery of counseling services to culturally diverse populations. In this entry, seven barriers to cross-cultural counseling are described. A major barrier to effective cross-cultural counseling is the counselor's lack of cultural self-awareness. Cultural self-awareness refers to the counselor's awareness and acknowledgment of his or her own cultural beliefs, attitudes, and values as well as an awareness of his or her biases and faulty ...