Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy In Urban Education Degree, Counseling Psychology
Education and Human Services
Adam Voight, Ph.D.
Kelly Liao, Ph.D.
Multicultural counseling competence is the extent to which a therapist can effectively work with clients from cultural groups which differ from their own, and is expressed through skills, knowledge, and awareness (Sue, 1998; Sue, Bernier, Durran, Feinberg, Pedersen, Smith, & Vasquez-Nuttall, 1982; Sue, Arredondo, & McDavis, 1992). Color-blind racial ideology is the belief that either emphasizes sameness among all individuals, known as color-evasion color-blind racial attitudes, or emphasizes that all individuals have the same opportunity for success, known as power-evasion colorblind racial attitudes (Carr, 1997; Neville, Lilly, Duran, Lee, & Browne, 2000; Neville, Awad, Brooks, Flores, & Bluemel, 2013). A significant positive relationship has been found between therapist multicultural counseling competence and color-blind racial attitudes (Johnson & Williams, 2015). Additionally, lower levels of multicultural counseling competence are predictive of poorer ratings of empathy, while higher levels of color-blind racial attitudes are predictive of poorer ratings of empathy (e.g., Burkard & Knox, 2004; Fuertes & Brobst, 2002). This study examined if therapist color-blind racial attitudes mediate the relationship between therapist-reported multicultural counseling competence and therapist-rated empathy. Participants were licensed practitioners and masters and doctoral-level trainees under supervision. Participants completed a measure assessing v multicultural counseling competence, two measures assessing color-blind racial attitudes, and a measure assessing ratings of empathy. Results found partial mediation of colorevasion color-blindness on the relationship between multicultural awareness and empathy expressed toward an African-American male client. There was no mediated effect when respondents rated their general empathy. Results and future directions are also discussed.
Fitts, Brain R., "The Mediating Effect of Color-blind Racial Ideology on the Relationship Between Multicultural Counseling Competence And Empathy" (2019). ETD Archive. 1303.