Why Is Cultural Competence Important In Education?


Why Is Cultural Competence Important In Education
Cultural Competence and Professional Learning – Cultural competence in school communities enhances the teaching and learning process and helps ensure equitable opportunities and supports for each and every student. Cultural competence encompasses:

An understanding of one’s own cultural identity, biases, prejudices, and experiences of both privilege and marginalization; The continuous pursuit of skills, knowledge, and personal growth needed to establish a meaningful connection with people from various cultural backgrounds; and A lifelong commitment to action that supports equity within each school community.

View complete answer

Why is cultural competence so important?

Why is Cultural Competence Important? Cultural competence encourages the acknowledgement and acceptance of differences in appearance, behavior and culture. In this field, you will encounter diverse clients from a wide range of backgrounds.
View complete answer

What are 2 reasons why educators need to emphasise cultural competence?

Environment and Resources – Cultural competency is about everyday practicalities as much as big concepts and principles. Educators create culturally supportive programs and environments when they work collaboratively with families to include elements of family life into the service.

  • Provide translated notices, brochures and pamphlets that help explain the routines of the early years setting.
  • Create a space to display community information and provide bilingual information whenever possible.
  • Acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land at meetings and public forums.
  • Display a plaque that recognises the Traditional Owners of the land, as well as posters and symbols (such as the
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flag) that symbolize cultural respect.
  • Display a calendar of significant cultural events to share with all families.
  • Discuss with families appropriate ways of acknowledging and celebrating these events with children and families.
  • Display photos of children engaged in learning. Accompany photos with explanations of the children’s experiences using the languages spoken by the children and written in the spoken language and English.

Art Area

  • Crayons, paper and writing implements in different skin tones.
  • Opportunities to mix paints (or dyed shaving cream) to represent a variety of skin colours
  • Use fingers, materials from nature and other resources in painting, not only paintbrushes.
  • Examples of artworks, including contemporary artworks such as paintings.
  • Materials that showcase and encourage children to create arts and crafts found in diverse communities including their own (e.g. ceramic bowls and statues, clay to make pottery, woven wall hangings, place mats, wool)


  • Musical instruments used in different cultures
  • Songs reflective of different cultures.
  • Make musical instruments from natural materials
  • Have diverse types of music playing throughout the centre

Construction & Blocks

  • Images of a diverse range of houses and architecture, including those representative of the local community. National geographic magazines or websites may be a good source of images from diverse places.
  • A range of building materials including twigs, rocks, plants, canvas and bricks.
  • Animal figures- both locally familiar and native to other countries.
  • Toy vehicles that represent different occupations (e.g. taxis, farm tractors)

Dramatic Play

  • Multicultural kitchen utensils, storage containers and food packages
  • Dolls and puppets of various ethnicities and genders
  • Child sized disability aids (e.g. crutches, walkers, eyeglasses with lens removed)
  • Consider designing dramatic play setting that represent a range of environments where people may live and work.


  • Fabrics and rugs, wall hanging and artwork that are representative of a wide variety of cultures.
  • Maps of local community or world maps to identify different cultures within the centre.
  • Environmental print in different languages, particularly those that are relevant to the children and their families including local Aboriginal languages.
  • Images of diverse peoples and lands can be sourced through various websites and magazines, including National
  • Geographic. Representations of cultures in books, images and artifacts need to reflect contemporary perspectives, rather than stereotypes.


  • Plant a variety of herbs and plants that reflect a rich cultural diversity, for example Vietnamese mint, bamboo in pots, lemongrass, and oregano, Australian native plants.
  • Get baskets from the local op shop and fill them with pebbles, bark, honkey nuts, shells and other locally sourced natural resources.

It’s important to understand that adding diverse resources into the environment and within the experiences that the children engage in should not be limited to just that. Culturally competent educators enable children to explore cultures, explore customs, explore traditions and create meaningful learning opportunities for children.

  • References Cultural Competence In Early Childhood, ECU Education Australia
  • Guide To The Early Years Learning Framework

Understanding Cultural Competence, EYLFPLPCultural Connections, Child Australia Cultural Competence, ACECQAWhat Does It Mean To Be Culturally Competent, ACECQACultural Competency In Early Childhood, ELAA AustraliaCultural Competence In Children, Selmar Education Early Years Learning Framework : Cultural Competence In Early Childhood Settings
View complete answer

What is an example of cultural competence in education?

What does it mean to be culturally competent? Why Is Cultural Competence Important In Education Why Is Cultural Competence Important In Education This week on We Hear You, Rhonda Livingstone, ACECQA’s National Education Leader, writes about cultural competence. Cultural competence is about our will and actions to build understanding between people, to be respectful and open to different cultural perspectives, strengthen cultural security and work towards equality in opportunity.

Relationship building is fundamental to cultural competence and is based on the foundations of understanding each other’s expectations and attitudes, and subsequently building on the strength of each other’s knowledge, using a wide range of community members and resources to build on their understandings.

We have known for a long time about the importance of respecting diversity and embedding a range of cultures in early childhood education and care programs. However the term, cultural competence, is relatively new to many working in the education and care sector, having been introduced in the and the,

  1. Over the past two or three decades we have endeavoured to challenge and address injustice, racism, exclusion and inequity through legislation, awareness raising, rights education and an anti-bias curriculum.
  2. Cultural competence reinforces and builds on this work.
  3. So what does cultural competence mean and why is it so important for children to have their culture and cultural backgrounds acknowledged, respected and valued? Underlying cultural competence are the principles of trust, respect for diversity, equity, fairness, and social justice Culture is the fundamental building block of identity and the development of a strong cultural identity is essential to children’s healthy sense of who they are and where they belong.

It is more than being respectful of the cultures represented in the service or even the community. It is much more than awareness of cultural differences, more than knowledge of the customs and values of those different to our own. Cultural competence is the ability to understand, communicate with and effectively interact with people across cultures.

  • being aware of one’s own world view
  • developing positive attitudes towards cultural differences
  • gaining knowledge of different cultural practices and world views
  • developing skills for communication and interaction across cultures.

Supporting this view, the Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNAICC) identifies that cultural proficiency “requires more than becoming culturally aware or practising tolerance”. Rather, it is the ability to “identify and challenge one’s own cultural assumptions, values and beliefs, and to make a commitment to communicating at the cultural interface”.

Links with the Learning Frameworks Cultural competence is a key practice in the learning frameworks, and the notion of cultural competence is embedded throughout. For example, principles within the learning frameworks relevant to cultural competence include fostering secure, respectful and reciprocal relationships, partnerships, high expectations and equity and respect for diversity.

Issues of respecting and valuing diversity and culture are embedded in the Being, Belonging, Becoming themes of the Early Years Learning Framework. This framework acknowledges there are many ways of living, being and of knowing. Children are born belonging to a culture, which is not only influenced by traditional practices, heritage and ancestral knowledge, but also by the experiences, values and beliefs of individual families and communities.

  • children develop a sense of belonging to groups and communities and an understanding of the reciprocal rights and responsibilities necessary for active community participation
  • children respond to diversity with respect
  • children become aware of fairness
  • children become socially responsible and show respect for the environment.

It is also important to remember that a guiding principle of the Education and Care Services National Law is that Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures are valued. What does cultural competence look like in practice? Educators who are culturally competent respect multiple cultural ways of knowing, seeing and living, celebrate the benefits of diversity and have an ability to understand and honour differences.

Educators also seek to promote children’s cultural competence. In practical terms, it is a never ending journey involving critical reflection, of learning to understand how people perceive the world and participating in different systems of shared knowledge. Cultural competence is not static, and our level of cultural competence changes in response to new situations, experiences and relationships.

The three elements of cultural competence are:

  • attitudes
  • skills
  • knowledge

These are important at three levels:

  1. individual level – the knowledge, skills, values, attitudes and behaviours of individuals
  2. service level – management and operational frameworks and practices, expectations, including policies, procedures, vision statements and the voices of children, families and community
  3. the broader system level – how services relate to and respect the rest of the community, agencies, Elders, local community protocols.

While there is no checklist to tick off to identify culturally competent educators, we can start to build a picture of the attitudes, skills and knowledge required. For example, educators who respect diversity and are culturally competent:

  • have an understanding of, and honour, the histories, cultures, languages, traditions, child rearing practices
  • value children’s different capacities and abilities
  • respect differences in families’ home lives
  • recognise that diversity contributes to the richness of our society and provides a valid evidence base about ways of knowing
  • demonstrate an ongoing commitment to developing their own cultural competence in a two-way process with families and communities
  • promote greater understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ways of knowing and being
  • teach, role-model and encourage cultural competence in children, recognising that this is crucial to ensuring children have a sense of strong cultural identity and belonging
  • engage in ongoing reflection relating to their cultural competence and how they build children’s cultural competence.

Ongoing reflection essential for the learning journey A learning journey of cultural competence occurs when ongoing reflection and environmental feedback involves and supports educators to move along their culturally competent learning journey. The following diagram from the Educators’ Guide to the Early Years Learning Framework (p26) is a useful tool to share with teams, to discuss and to identify how individuals are progressing on their learning journey. Why Is Cultural Competence Important In Education There are also many reflective questions in the Guide and Learning Frameworks to provoke discussion and reflection. For example:

  • Who is advantaged when I work in this way? Who is disadvantaged?
  • What does cultural competence mean in your practice, for children, family, community and educators?
  • What do you know about the language/s that the children bring with them?

And the case study of a project undertaken by educators to develop processes that value and use the expertise of Aboriginal people in local communities may offer some suggestions for starting similar projects. Why Is Cultural Competence Important In Education

  • Educators’ Guide to the Early Years Learning Framework p21 Educators’ Guide to the Framework for School Age Care, p57
  • Educators’ Guide to the Early Years Learning Framework p23
  • Framework for School Age Care in Australia p15 Early Years Learning Framework p16
  • SNAICC 2012 Consultation Overview on Cultural Competence in Early Childhood Education and Care Services
  • Early Years Learning Framework in Action p 27

: What does it mean to be culturally competent?
View complete answer

What is cultural competency and why does it matter?

Maria Rosario T. de Guzman, Extension Specialist in Adolescence Tonia R. Durden, Extension Specialist in Early Childhood Education Sarah A. Taylor, Graduate Research Assistant Jackie M. Guzman, Extension Educator Kathy L. Potthoff, Extension Educator Displaying the cultural competency behaviors of active listening, empathy, and effective engagement can help us to create a welcoming environment and establish the appreciation of similarities and differences among cultures.

Cultural competence is the ability of a person to effectively interact, work, and develop meaningful relationships with people of various cultural backgrounds. Cultural background can include the beliefs, customs, and behaviors of people from various groups. Gaining cultural competence is a lifelong process of increasing self-awareness, developing social skills and behaviors around diversity, and gaining the ability to advocate for others.

It goes beyond tolerance, which implies that one is simply willing to overlook differences. Instead, it includes recognizing and respecting diversity through our words and actions in all contexts.
View complete answer

What are at least 2 reasons cultural competency is important?

What Is Cultural Competence? And Why Is It Important? Relationships are a powerful part of who we are. They can help make us feel like we belong, like we have something to contribute to this world. They can strengthen us. They give us reason to affect change and, more importantly, to be changed.
View complete answer

Why do students need developing intercultural competence?

You’ll gain essential skills for the modern workplace – Intercultural competence is an essential set of skills needed in the modern workplace. By learning how to interact better with people from different backgrounds you’ll also learn valuable communication skills, effective time management, conflict management and teamwork, both virtually and in-person.
View complete answer

You might be interested:  What To Wear To A Med School Interview?

What are the components of cultural competence in education?

What is cultural competence? – Cultural competence is the ability to understand and effectively interact with people from cultures different from our own. It also means being able to negotiate cross-cultural differences to accomplish practical goals. Multicultural competency requires the following:

● A basic understanding of your own culture and ethnicity ● A willingness to learn about the cultural practices and worldview of others ● A positive attitude toward cultural differences ● A willingness to accept and respect these differences Cultural competence has four major components: awareness, attitude, knowledge, and skills.

View complete answer

What are the 4 elements of cultural competence?

Cultural competence is comprised of four components: (a) Awareness of one’s own cultural worldview, (b) Attitude towards cultural differences, (c) Knowledge of different cultural practices and worldviews, and; (d) Cross cultural Skills.
View complete answer

What is a good example of cultural competence?

Examples of cultural competence in health care – A culturally competent health care organization recognizes the importance of culture in delivering patient care and focuses on reducing disparities in health care due to race, ethnicity, culture, gender, economic status, and other factors.

Depending on the organization and community served, health care workers may face different scenarios in working with patients with backgrounds different from their own. Consider these examples of cultural competence in health care: ● Patient preference for traditional treatment. Instead of taking prescribed medication for hypertension, a patient born in China expresses a preference for traditional Chinese medicine.

A culturally competent health care professional practices active listening to understand the patient’s concerns before explaining the benefits of the prescribed treatment. This process can help earn the patient’s trust and help them feel safe and recognized — an essential factor for treatment acceptance.

  • If health care practitioners can build a trust-based relationship with a patient’s family or friends, they may be able to help the patient understand the importance of taking the prescribed medication.
  • Changing demographics,
  • A hospital that has served its community for decades is seeing a cultural shift in its patients, with a large percentage of the population now speaking another language.

A culturally competent health care organization surveys census data to understand who lives in the surrounding communities, then identifies community groups that can help with communication needs and hires interpreters. With the input of community organizations, the hospital can adjust its materials and other forms of communication to improve health outcomes in the community.

● Religious beliefs and care delivery, A patient who follows a diet prescribed by their faith doesn’t want to take medicines made with animal products. Another patient prefers working with health care professionals of the same gender due to their religious beliefs. Patients often rely on their faith to reduce their anxieties when making difficult health care decisions.

A culturally competent health professional recognizes the vital role faith plays in providing comfort to patients. They listen to their patients when they share their religious and spiritual beliefs, and they adjust treatment plans to accommodate their patients’ needs while ensuring high-quality care.

  1. For organizations building their cultural competence, a critical first step is assessing their current cross-cultural relationships and determining if their health care services are designed to meet the unique needs of various groups.
  2. This assessment can involve feedback from community groups, patients, health care employees, and others.

The findings can lay the groundwork for culturally competent policies and programs to promote health access and improve health outcomes for all patients. When a health care organization prioritizes cultural competence, it: ● Aims to understand the impact of cultural differences ● Expands its cultural knowledge ● Adapts to meet culturally unique needs of patients ● Recognizes cultural competence as an essential means of reducing racial and ethnic disparities in health care Each organization will implement programs based on their unique circumstances, but culturally competent health care organizations share similar traits: ● Investment in diversity,

  • Implementing programs that promote cultural competence can achieve more success when embracing diversity is at the core of the organization’s mission.
  • Openness to self-assessment, including determining biases,
  • Unconscious biases can affect health care professionals and how they perform their duties.

Organizations must be willing to face underlying biases in their systems and work to make the systems equitable for all patients. ● Interest in acquiring cultural knowledge. An organization focused on promoting cultural competence looks for opportunities to learn about different cultures.

  1. This starts at the top, with executives making efforts to learn about the community they serve.
  2. At the point of care, health care professionals interacting with patients should work to learn more about the patients’ cultures.
  3. Dedication to cultural education,
  4. Cultural education through training programs that include self-reflection and critical thinking enables health care professionals to identify areas for improvement and prevent health care disparities in their work.

● Adaptability and willingness to change, Organizations with the flexibility to evolve and manage change can meet the shifting cultural needs of the individuals and communities they serve.
View complete answer

What are the two keys to achieving cultural competency?

How do we develop an attitude and components of cultural competence? – Developing cross-cultural attitudes allows one to develop skills for better engaging with people from all kinds of cultures. Cross-cultural skills demonstrated through the ability to communicate with respect; recognize others’ values, accept knowledge, skills, and talents; and tolerate, engage, and celebrate the success of others.

Practice openness by demonstrating acceptance of difference. Be flexible by demonstrating acceptance of ambiguity. Demonstrate humility through suspension of judgment and the ability to learn. Be sensitive to others by appreciating cultural differences. Show a spirit of adventure by showing curiosity and seeing opportunities in different situations. Use a sense of humor through the ability to laugh at ourselves. Practice positive change or action by demonstrating a successful interaction with the identified culture.

Borchum (2002) described cultural competence as ” a non-linear dynamic process that is never-ending and ever expending. It is built on increases in knowledge and skill development related to its attributes ” p.5. We synthesized and adopted Williams’s (2001) and Martin and Vaughn’s (2007) studies that can assist in better understanding of components of cultural competency.

Self-knowledge and awareness about one’s own culture. Awareness of one’s own cultural worldview. Experience and knowledge of different cultural practices. Attitude toward cultural differences.

In conclusion, our global society necessitates interactions and relationships with people who are different from oneself. By developing one’s own cultural competence, productivity and efficiency may increase and in turn improve one’s customer service skills. Customers who feel valued and understood will return for repeat business.
View complete answer

How can teachers incorporate culture in the classroom?

Matthew Lynch Matthew Lynch is an educational consultant and former teacher who now researches policy and education reform. A multicultural society is best served by a culturally responsive curriculum. Schools that acknowledge the diversity of their student population understand the importance of promoting cultural awareness.

Teachers who are interested in fostering a cultural awareness in their classroom should actively demonstrate to their students that they genuinely care about their cultural, emotional, and intellectual needs. To this end, there are several strategies that you can use to build trusting relationships with diverse students.

To incorporate cultural awareness into your classroom curriculum, you should: 1. Express interest in the ethnic background of your students. Encourage your students to research and share information about their ethnic background as a means of fostering a trusting relationship with fellow classmates.

Analyze and celebrate differences in traditions, beliefs, and social behaviors. It is of note that this task helps European-American students realize that their beliefs and traditions constitute a culture as well, which is a necessary breakthrough in the development of a truly culturally responsive classroom.

Also, take the time to learn the proper pronunciation of student names and express interest in the etymology of interesting and diverse names.2. Redirect your role in the classroom from instructor to facilitator. Another important requirement for creating a nurturing environment for students is reducing the power differential between the instructor and students.

  1. Students in an authoritarian classroom may sometimes display negative behaviors as a result of a perceived sense of social injustice; in the culturally diverse classroom, the teacher thus acts more like a facilitator than an instructor.
  2. Providing students with questionnaires about what they find to be interesting or important provides them with a measure of power over what they get to learn and provides them with greater intrinsic motivation and connectedness to the material.

Allowing students to bring in their own reading material and present it to the class provides them with an opportunity to both interact with and share stories, thoughts, and ideas that are important to their cultural and social perspective.3. Maintain a strict level of sensitivity to language concerns.

  • In traditional classrooms, students who are not native English speakers often feel marginalized, lost, and pressured into discarding their original language in favor of English.
  • In a culturally responsive classroom, diversity of language is celebrated and the level of instructional materials provided to non-native speakers are tailored to their level of English fluency.

Accompanying materials should be provided in the student’s primary language and the student should be encouraged to master English.4. Maintain high expectations for student performance. Given that culturally responsive instruction is a student-centered philosophy, it should come as no surprise that expectations for achievement are determined and assigned individually for each student.

Students don’t receive lavish praise for simple tasks but do receive praise in proportion to their accomplishments. If a student is not completing her work, then one should engage the student positively and help guide the student toward explaining how to complete the initial steps that need to be done to complete a given assignment or task.5.

Incorporate methods for self-testing. Another potent method for helping students become active participants in learning is to reframe the concept of testing. While testing is usually associated with grades (and therefore stress) in traditional classrooms, in a culturally responsive classroom frequent non-graded tests can be used to provide progress checks and ensure that students don’t fall behind on required material.

Teaching students to self-test while learning new information will help them better remember and use what they’ve learned in class and will help them realize on their own when they need to study a topic in greater depth.6. Maintain an “inclusive” curriculum that remains respectful of differences. A culturally responsive curriculum is both inclusive in that it ensures that all students are included within all aspects of the school and it acknowledges the unique differences students may possess.

A culturally responsive curriculum also encourages teachers’ understanding and recognition of each student’s non-school cultural life and background, and provides a means for them to incorporate this information into the curriculum, thus promoting inclusion.

  1. Schools have the responsibility to teach all students how to synthesize cultural differences into their knowledge base, in order to facilitate students’ personal and professional success in a diverse world.
  2. A culturally responsive curriculum helps students from a minority ethnic/racial background develop a sense of identity as individuals, as well as proudly identify with their particular culture group.

Teachers can play a big role in helping these students succeed through the establishment of culturally responsive classrooms. The opinions expressed in Education Futures: Emerging Trends in K-12 are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.
View complete answer

What are the 5 elements of cultural competence?

Definitions of Cultural Competence There is no one definition of cultural competence. Definitions of cultural competence have evolved from diverse perspectives, interests and needs and are incorporated in state legislation, Federal statutes and programs, private sector organizations and academic settings.

The seminal work of Cross et al in 1989 offered a definition of cultural competence that established a solid foundation for the field. The definition has been widely adapted and modified during the past 15 years. However, the core concepts and principles espoused in this framework remain constant as they are viewed as universally applicable across multiple systems.

A number of definitions and descriptions of cultural competence were reviewed to compile the selected list. The following definitions of are highlighted because they represent or are based on original and exemplary work and because of their potential impact to the field of health and human services.

Cross et al, 1989 Cultural competence is a set of congruent behaviors, attitudes, and policies that come together in a system, agency or among professionals and enable that system, agency or those professions to work effectively in cross-cultural situations. The word culture is used because it implies the integrated pattern of human behavior that includes thoughts, communications, actions, customs, beliefs, values and institutions of a racial, ethnic, religious or social group.

The word competence is used because it implies having the capacity to function effectively. Five essential elements contribute to a system’s institution’s, or agency’s ability to become more culturally competent which include:

  1. Valuing diversity
  2. H aving the capacity for cultural self-assessment
  3. B eing conscious of the dynamics inherent when cultures interact
  4. H aving institutionalized culture knowledge
  5. H aving developed adaptations to service delivery reflecting an understanding of cultural diversity

These five elements should be manifested at every level of an organization including policy making, administrative, and practice. Further these elements should be reflected in the attitudes, structures, policies and services of the organization. National Center for Cultural Competence, 1998, modified from Cross et al Cultural competence requires that organizations:

  • Have a defined set of values and principles, and demonstrate behaviors, attitudes, policies, and structures that enable them to work effectively cross-culturally.
  • Have the capacity to (1) value diversity, (2) conduct self-assessment, (3) manage the dynamics of difference, (4) acquire and institutionalize cultural knowledge, and (5) adapt to diversity and the cultural contexts of communities they serve.
  • Incorporate the above in all aspects of policy-making, administration, practice and service delivery, systematically involve consumers, families and communities.
You might be interested:  What Is The Study Of Snakes Called?

Cultural competence is a developmental process that evolves over an extended period. Both individuals and organizations are at various levels of awareness, knowledge and skills along the cultural competence continuum. Betancourt et al., 2002 Cultural competence in health care describes the ability of systems to provide care to patients with diverse values, beliefs and behaviors, including tailoring delivery to meet patients’ social, cultural, and linguistic needs.

Lavizzo-Mourey & Mackenzie, 1996 Cultural competence is the demonstrated awareness and integration of three population-specific issues: health-related beliefs and cultural values, disease incidence and prevalence, and treatment efficacy. But perhaps the most significant aspect of this concept is the inclusion and integration of the three areas that are usually considered separately when they are considered at all.

Roberts et al, 1990 Cultural competence refers to a program’s ability to honor and respect those beliefs, interpersonal styles, attitudes and behaviors both of families who are clients and the multicultural staff who are providing services. In doing so, it incorporates these values at the levels of policy, administration and practice.

Denboba, MCHB, 1993 Cultural competence is defined as a set of values, behaviors, attitudes, and practices within a system, organization, program or among individuals and which enables them to work effectively cross culturally. Further, it refers to the ability to honor and respect the beliefs, language, interpersonal styles and behaviors of individuals and families receiving services, as well as staff who are providing such services.

Striving to achieve cultural competence is a dynamic, ongoing, developmental process that requires a long-term commitment. At a systems, organizational or program level, cultural competence requires a comprehensive and coordinated plan that includes interventions on levels of:

  1. policy making;
  2. infra-structure building;
  3. program administration and evaluation;
  4. the delivery of services and enabling supports; and
  5. the individual.

This often requires the re-examination of mission statements; policies and procedures; administrative practices; staff recruitment, hiring and retention; professional development and in-service training; translation and interpretation processes; family/professional/community partnerships; health care practices and interventions including addressing racial/ethnic health disparities and access issues; health education and promotion practices/materials; and community and state needs assessment protocols.

  1. value diversity and similarities among all peoples;
  2. understand and effectively respond to cultural differences;
  3. engage in cultural self-assessment at the individual and organizational levels;
  4. make adaptations to the delivery of services and enabling supports; and
  5. institutionalize cultural knowledge.

Tervalon & Murray-Garcia, 1998 Cultural humility is best defined not by a discrete endpoint but as a commitment and active engagement in a lifelong process that individuals enter into on an ongoing basis with patients, communities, colleagues, and with themselvesa process that requires humility in how physicians bring into check the power imbalances that exist in the dynamics of physician-patient communication by using patient-focused interviewing and care.

American Association for Health Education Cultural competence is the ability of an individual to understand and respect values, attitudes, beliefs, and mores that differ across cultures, and to consider and respond appropriately to these differences in planning, implementing, and evaluating health education and promotion programs and interventions.

National Alliance for Hispanic Health, 2001 Cultural proficiency is when providers and systems seek to do more than provide unbiased care as they value the positive role culture can play in a person’s health and well-being. National Medical Association Cultural Competency (Health) is the application of cultural knowledge, behaviors, and interpersonal and clinical skills that enhances a provider’s effectiveness in managing patient care.U.S.

Department of Health and Human Services: Administration on Developmental Disabilities, 2000 The term cultural competence means services, supports or other assistance that are conducted or provided in a manner that is responsive to the beliefs, interpersonal styles, attitudes, language and behaviors of individuals who are receiving services, and in a manner that has the greatest likelihood of ensuring their maximum participation in the program.

Health Resources and Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions Cultural competence is defined simply as the level of knowledge-based skills required to provide effective clinical care to patients from a particular ethnic or racial group. Health Resources and Services Administration, Bureau of Primary Health Care Cultural and linguistic competence is a set of congruent behaviors, attitudes and policies that come together in a system, agency or among professionals that enables effective work in cross-cultural situations.

  • Culture” refers to integrated patterns of human behavior that include the language, thoughts, communications, actions, customs, beliefs, values, and institutions of racial, ethnic, religious or social groups.
  • Competence” implies having the capacity to function effectively as an individual and an organization within the context of the cultural beliefs, behaviors and needs presented by consumers and their communities.U.S.

Department of Health and Human Services: Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Title V Block Grant Program Guidance, 2003 Culturally competent – the ability to provide services to clients that honor different cultural beliefs, interpersonal styles, attitudes and behaviors and the use of multi-cultural staff in the policy development, administration and provision of those services.

Office of Minority Health, National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health Care (CLAS Standards), 2001 Cultural competence – Having the capacity to function effectively as an individual and an organization within the context of the cultural beliefs, behaviors and needs presented by consumers and their communities.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Services Cultural Competence includes: Attaining the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to enable administrators and practitioners within system of care to provide effective care for diverse populations, i.e., to work within the person’s values and reality conditions.

Recovery and rehabilitation are more likely to occur where managed care systems, services, and providers have and utilize knowledge and skills that are culturally competent and compatible with the backgrounds of consumers from the four underserved/underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, their families, and communities.

Cultural competence acknowledges and incorporates variance in normative acceptable behaviors, beliefs and values in determining an individual’s mental wellness/illness, and incorporating those variables into assessment and treatment. References/Sources American Association for Health Education, http://www.aahperd.org/aahe Betancourt, J., Green, A.

  1. Carrillo, E. (2002).
  2. Cultural competence in health care: Emerging frameworks and practical approaches.
  3. The Commonwealth Fund.
  4. Cross, T., Bazron, B., Dennis, K., & Isaacs, M., (1989).
  5. Towards A Culturally Competent System of Care, Volume I.
  6. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Child Development Center, CASSP Technical Assistance Center.

Denboba, D., U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Services and Resources Administration (1993). MCHB/DSCSHCN Guidance for Competitive Applications, Maternal and Child Health Improvement Projects for Children with Special Health Care Needs.

  • Lavizzo-Mourey, R.
  • Mackenzie, E. (1996).
  • Cultural competence: Essential measurement of quality for managed care organizations.” Annals of Internal Medicine, 124 919-926.
  • National Alliance for Hispanic Health (2001).
  • A Primer for cultural proficiency: Towards quality health care services for Hispanics.

Washington, D.C. National Medical Association, National Medical Association Cultural Competence Primer, retrieved from http://www.askme3.org/PFCHC/download.asp on April 2, 2004. Roberts, R., et al. (1990). Developing Culturally Competent Programs for Families of Children with Special Needs (monograph and workbook); Georgetown University Child Development Center.

  1. Taylor, T., et al. (1998).
  2. Training and Technical Assistance Manual for Culturally Competent Services and Systems: Implications for Children with Special Health Care Needs.
  3. National Center for Cultural Competence, Georgetown University Child Development Center.
  4. Tervalon, M.
  5. Murray-Garcia, J. (1998).
  6. Cultural humility versus cultural competence: a Critical discussion in defining physician training outcomes in multicultural education.” Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 9 (2) 117-125.U.S.

Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Development Disabilities (2000). Amendments to P.L.106-402 – The Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act of 2000.U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions, retrieved from http://www.bhpr.hrsa.gov/diversity/cultcomp.htm on April 2, 2004.U.S.

Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Division of State and Community Health (2003). Maternal and Child Health Services Title V Block Grant Program, retrieved from ftp://ftp.hrsa.gov/mchb/blockgrant/bgguideforms.pdf on April 13, 2004.U.S.

Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Minority Health (2001). National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health Care: Final Report, retrieved from http://www.omhrc.gov/clas/ on April 15, 2004.U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Services, retrieved from http://www.bhpr.hrsa.gov/diversity/cultcomp.htm on April 2, 2004.
View complete answer

What is effective cultural competence?

The Child Welfare League of America defines cultural competency as “the ability of individuals and systems to respond respectfully and effectively to people of all cultures, classes, races, ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientations, and faiths or religions in a manner that recognizes, affirms, and values the worth of individuals, families, tribes, and communities, and protects and preserves the dignity of each” (Child Welfare League of America, 2001, Cultural Competence Defined).

  • A definition of cultural competency in public child welfare should also consider age, especially concerning youth transitioning out of the child welfare system.
  • A context of cultural competency means a commitment to re-evaluate the exclusive, adult-centered culture of child welfare agencies at minimum and an active agenda for empowerment and inclusion of youth at best (National Child Welfare Resource Centers, 2007).

Cultural and linguistic competence suggests more than just language proficiency, but a commitment to incorporate the cultural knowledge into policy and practice. Language is a crucial aspect of culture and a primary vehicle for transmitting knowledge, beliefs, attitudes, and social expectations.

  1. Consequently, social service systems committed to cultural competency should consider linguistic and literacy issues in developing a comprehensive strategy.
  2. The National Center for Cultural Competence (n.d.) explains that to become culturally competent, organizations must have: A defined set of values and principles and demonstrate behaviors, attitudes, policies, and structures that enable them to work effectively cross-culturally; The capacity to value diversity, conduct self-assessment, manage the dynamics of differences, acquire and institutionalize cultural knowledge, and adapt to diversity and the cultural contexts of the communities they serve; and Incorporate the above in all aspects of policy-making, administration, practice, and service delivery, and systematically involve consumers, key stakeholders, and communities.

Cultural competence is a developmental process that evolves over time rather than being a static, one-time achievement (Cross, Bazron, Dennis, & Isaacs, 1989; McPhatter, 1997). Cross et al. described the process of becoming culturally competent as a continuum ranging from cultural destructiveness, cultural incapacity, cultural blindness to the ultimate goal of cultural proficiency.1 This cultural competence continuum takes into account the continuous organizational changes in child welfare agencies, as well as contextual changes affecting the communities served by child welfare systems, making cultural proficiency a desired goal in an effort to improve outcomes.

Though knowledge about and research on cultural and linguistic competency are expanding and calls for change are increasing, considerable variability remains in system responses to effectively serving culturally and ethnically diverse populations (McPhatter & Ganaway, 2003). “Cultural competency means being aware of your own cultural beliefs and values and how these may be different from other cultures—including being able to learn about and honor the different cultures of those you work with.” -Agency Staff Member 1 For more information, see the Cultural Competence Continuum ( Word – 73 KB) by the National Center for Cultural Competence.

back ( Previous ) ( Next )
View complete answer

What are three goals to increase cultural competence?

9. Enhancing Cultural Competence

  1. Define Your Vision and Goals for Cultural Competence
    1. Indicate what cultural competence would look like and the related goals for your organization or community.
      1. Describe the vision for cultural competence – What qualities your organization or community would have when it becomes more culturally competent. These vision statements might include:
        • People of diverse backgrounds and experience working together.
        • People understanding and appreciating one another’s differences.
        • People being respectful of those different from them. What is your organization or community’s vision for cultural competence?
      2. For each relevant level indicate the goal for cultural competence:
        • Individual level – increase respectful engagement by yourself or other members
        • Organizational level – change policy and practices to enhance inclusion and respectful engagement with different groups.
        • Program level – redesign programs or intervention so that they are more effective and a better fit with cultural beliefs and practices.
        • Community level – increase respectful engagement among those from diverse cultures and decrease intolerant practices by community members. What will your goal for cultural competence be at the: Individual level: Organizational level: Program level: Community level: Related resources :
  2. Conduct a Cultural Audit
    1. Describe the cultural context of your organization or community
      1. Identify the different cultures or shared experiences represented in the organization, group, and community in which you belong or work. These may include groups that differ in: (fill in those that are appropriate for your organization or group)
        • Nationality
        • Ethnicity
        • Native language
        • Race
        • Gender
        • Religion or spiritual beliefs
        • Occupational Status
        • Educational Status
        • Economic status or social class
        • Physical attributes
        • Relationship Status
        • Age group
        • Geographical/regional residency
        • Health status
        • Others specific to a group
      2. Identify the current expectations and stereotypes in your group or community about people from each of these cultures, and how these stereotypes might affect communication and your ability to work together. Examples of stereotypes, which can be positive, negative, or neutral, may include:
        • Hardworking or lazy
        • Family-oriented or work-focused
        • Withholding or generous
        • Expressive or quiet
        • Suspicious of strangers, unfriendly, or open and warm
        • Aggressive or gentle
        • Emotional or unfeeling
        • Traditional or open to change
        • Intelligent or ignorant List those cultural groups within your community or organization and the possible stereotypes that affect how you communicate or work with them:
    2. Characterize the current relationships among cultures within your organization, group, or community:
      1. What cultures are represented in your organization currently? which ones are excluded?
      2. What kinds of relationships are already established among cultural groups?
      3. How well are different cultural groups well organized?
      4. What kinds of conflicts or struggles currently exist among cultural groups? What historical events set the stage for the current conflict?
      5. How well are conflicts between groups openly recognized and talked about?
      6. Over which issues in the community have different cultural groups historically worked together to make improvements?
      7. Have there been or are there efforts to strengthen alliances among groups?
      8. What values and concerns do different cultural groups have in common?
    3. Assess the level of knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors related to cultural competence of those in your organization or community:
      1. Knowledge of the characteristics, experiences, beliefs, values, and norms of the cultural group(s) of interest.
      2. Respect for these cultural elements without assumptions of superiority or inferiority.
      3. Behavioral skills for working with people from different cultures.
      4. Presence of supportive relationships within the culture, and among with whom you are working and in your own culture.
      5. The state of curiosity, appreciation of your limited knowledge, and a commitment to learn about others.
      6. Awareness of how your own culture and experiences have shaped how you see others.
    4. Identify possible difficulties (or opportunities) you or your organization may encounter due to cultural differences. Describe how differences in the varied aspects listed will affect your ability to understand and work effectively with diverse cultural groups:
      1. Communication styles
        • Language usage (e.g., formal, street language).
        • Non-verbal communication (e.g., eye contact, gestures).
        • Assertiveness expressed. What difficulties (or opportunities) may your group encounter due to different communication styles?
      2. Attitudes toward conflict
        • Positive or negative.
        • Face-to-face or less direct methods of resolution. What difficulties (or opportunities) may your group encounter due to different conflict styles?
      3. Approaches to completing tasks
        • Orientation toward task (e.g., focus on getting things done).
        • Orientation towards relationships (e.g., focus on how people are feeling). What difficulties (or opportunities) may your group encounter due to different task completion styles?
      4. Decision-making styles
        • Delegation or tightly held decision-making powers.
        • Consensus, majority rule or other forms of group involvement. What difficulties (or opportunities) may your group encounter due to different decision-making styles?
      5. Attitudes about open emotional and personal matters
        • Variations in comfort level in disclosure (e.g., willingness to talk about self or relationships).
        • Need for privacy or preference for openness.
        • Inclusion of emotion or personal issues in decisions. What difficulties (or opportunities) may your group encounter due to different disclosure styles?
      6. Approaches to knowing
        • Analytical (head, thinking) or intuitive (heart, feeling).
        • Statistics, facts and science; or symbols, stores, and spirit. What difficulties (or opportunities) may your group encounter due to different approaches to knowing?
    5. Assess the level of cultural competence (i.e., ability to respectfully engage those from different cultures or backgrounds) of your organization or community. Consider the current practice or ability to:
  3. Build a Culturally Competent Organization
    1. Based on the cultural audit or assessment, identify goals for enhancing the cultural competence of your organization. For each goal (see potential goals below) indicate what “success” would look like if the goal were attained:
      1. Proclaiming Your Dream: Developing Vision and Mission Statements
      2. Increase people’s involvement and comfort with those from different cultures and backgrounds.
      3. Enhance the respect people show for others who are different.
      4. Increase members’ effectiveness in working with people from different cultures and backgrounds.
      5. Increase links to networks of people and groups from different cultures and backgrounds.
      6. Develop and enforce policies that assure everyone’s safety and rights regardless of cultural aspect or background.
    2. For each stated goal at the individual level (e.g., individual members of the group), identify specific activities that will be done to achieve success. These may include:
      1. Putting yourself and others in situations where you will meet people from other cultures and backgrounds.
      2. Examining your biases about people from other cultures (e.g., listing stereotypes and opinions you have of groups and the origins of those biases).
      3. Asking people questions about their cultures, customs and views, and comparing them to your own.
      4. Reading about other people’s cultures and histories.
      5. Listening to people tell their stories to better appreciate their experiences.
      6. Noting differences in what people value and do, in order to better understand how practices different from your own can be as or more effective in certain situations.
      7. Helping teach and encourage others to experience and appreciate different ways of seeing doing things.
    3. For each stated goal at the organizational level (e.g., overall organization), identify specific activities that will be done to achieve success. Activities may include:
      1. Including expectations for cultural competence in job descriptions.
      2. Ensuring your organizational facility is accessible and respectful of difference in it physical appearance, lay-out, decorations, and location.
      3. Engaging local people and other experts to teach and model cultural competence.
      4. Working together with people of other cultures in your community to reach common goals.
      5. Actively eliminating prejudice and discrimination in policies and practices
      6. Adapting policies and practices within the organization to assure safety, equal rights, and respect for all regardless of culture or backgrounds.
    4. For each stated goal at the program level, identify specific activities that will be done to achieve success. Activities may include:
      1. Reviewing how the organization’s programs, policies, and practices incorporate and accommodate local values and customs.
      2. Modifying current programs or interventions to better reflect the local customs and values of those affected by the organization’s actions.
      3. Redesigning proposed activities with the assistance of people from multiple cultures in order to assure their relevance and increase their effectiveness.
    5. For each activity aimed at reaching goals at the organizational and program level, indicate:
      1. Who will complete the activity
      2. What will they do
      3. By when
      4. With what resources
      5. In communication with whom
    6. Review your organization’s progress in meeting your goals for becoming culturally competent. Evaluate the organization’s level of cultural competence and make needed adjustments. Are you satisfied with the organization’s progress? What adjustments might improve your success? Related resources :
  4. Build a Culturally Inclusive Community
    1. Imagine a culturally inclusive community. Depending on your situation, success might look like:
      1. All citizens are engaged in decision that affect their lives.
      2. People take a stand when groups are targeted with unjust treatment.
      3. Public policies correct inequalities in the system (e.g., unequal educational opportunities).
      4. There are bridges and social ties among people from different cultures, backgrounds, and communities. What would success look like for cultural inclusiveness in your community?
    2. Assess the cultural inclusiveness of the community as a whole, if you have not already done so in your cultural audit.
      1. What cultural groups exist in the community?
      2. How do these groups function? Consider the interaction of their leaders, their social structure, where they live, what languages they speak, their cultural “rules”, their methods of decision-making, and their social, political, and religious gathering places
      3. How are particular groups seen by the rest of the community?
      4. Is there, or has there ever been, discrimination?
      5. What’s the community’s history, including the history of different cultural groups in the community, their relationship with greater community, and their history with each other?
    3. Invite opinion leaders and others from all groups to join in creating a vision of inclusiveness for the whole community
      1. Purposely seek out and invite representatives of many cultural groups to join your efforts to create an inclusive community.
      2. Many people from different cultural groups should be involved from the very beginning in order to promote equal partnership and ownership in the process.
      3. Once the group has formed, choose leaders and methods of functioning that build consensus among the members. Who should be at the table or represented?
    4. Identify a substantive issue from which to build inclusiveness
      1. What is the most important issue in your community that affects people of all cultural backgrounds?
      2. Identify a common issue that can help bring people of different cultures together to work towards a common purpose What substantive issues may help bring people from different cultural groups together in your community?
    5. Develop a strategic plan for using that issue to build inclusiveness within a participatory process
      1. Describe long-range goals related to the creation of an inclusive community (e.g., engage all citizens in decision making).
      2. Describe short-range goals (e.g., development of intergroup relationships, addressing shared issues).
      3. Describe how you will assess or evaluate progress reaching those goals.
    6. Encourage group members to establish relationships outside the group. Indicate how you will do so including by:
      1. Arranging for culturally diverse groups of people to carry out specific projects together.
      2. Regular discussions of common ground and similar concerns at public meetings.
      3. Participation in events and celebrations of different cultures.
      4. Rotating groups meetings among communities of the cultures represented in the broader community.
      5. Establishing regular social occasions outside the group.
      6. Actively create a welcoming atmosphere for those outside the group. Describe ways your organization might encourage individual relationships among members.
    7. Identify the assets that each cultural group brings to the table, and use those assets in strategic planning. For example:
      1. Skills related to visual arts, music, craftsmanship.
      2. Experience in political action.
      3. Expertise in conflict resolution.
      4. Other assets.
    8. Identify, respect, and transform conflicts into improved capacity and relationships in the community. Set ground rules for resolving conflict among members and with the community at the beginning of the effort. What ground rules for resolving conflict would be important to establish for your organization?
    9. Ensure institutional or systemic support for promoting social inclusion and equity. Indicate how you will accomplish this through:
      1. Involving representatives from key institutions to participate in the effort from the very beginning.
      2. Convincing potential supporters that including marginalized groups is in their best interest economically.
      3. Advocating to those with influence through the political power of various cultural groups. How will your organization ensure institutional or systemic support for your goals in your community?
    10. Acknowledge and celebrate successful collaborative action
      1. Use the opportunity to promote the benefits of working together.
      2. Make the celebration itself multicultural. Describe how you will celebrate future successful action in order to promote inclusion.
    11. Evaluate your effort to promote cultural inclusion at regular intervals, making needed adjustments
You might be interested:  What Can You Bring To The University?

: 9. Enhancing Cultural Competence
View complete answer

What are 3 benefits of cultural competence in the workplace?

Better Collaboration And Communication – Cultural competence in the work environment can help managers and employees communicate effectively and coordinate better with colleagues and customers. It can also enhance engagement with other team members and customers, along with increasing overall team performance.
View complete answer

Why is cultural competence important in the workplace?

The benefits of promoting a culturally-competent workplace – Modern Australia is represented by a diverse workforce, with a third of Australians born overseas and over 300 separate languages spoken at home, according to the Australian Bureau for Statistics,

Understanding how to manage cultural diversity within your team, promote cross-cultural learning and understanding, and reap the benefits of diversity is essential in our diverse nation and globalised world. Why is cultural competence important in the workplace? Not only is the Australian workforce getting more diverse, many large companies also operate across borders, which requires employees to be able to collaborate effectively in highly diverse teams.

Effectively managing diversity in the workplace means investing in your employees’ cultural competence so that they and your organisation can be enriched by diverse perspectives and backgrounds. Benefits of cultural competence in the workplace Countless studies have shown that diversity in organisations is an asset.

  • A 2019 report by McKinsey, for instance, notes that the most diverse companies outperform the least diverse companies by 36% in profitability.
  • It’s obvious that cultural competence is more than just a circumstantial necessity – investing in it can bring real benefits to your organisation and team.
  • Increased awareness of individual strengths and abilities With an increased understanding of the differences between people comes an increased appreciation of how those differences can translate into skills and strengths at work.

By building on these individual strengths, you can improve your team’s performance. New perspectives and approaches to solving problems With cultural diversity come new perspectives, which can invigorate workplace discussions and lead to innovative ways of solving problems.

  1. If you have culturally competent team members and leaders, these diverse opinions will be promoted and synthesised much more efficiently.
  2. Greater empathy and better relationships between employees Promoting cultural awareness will lead to improved relationships between employees, as they feel valued and respected by each other, and gain better insight into each other’s lives.

Better customer experience Cultural competence doesn’t just extend to relationships within teams, though. It also helps staff members interact with customers from different cultures, anticipate their needs, and create more inclusive customer experiences.
View complete answer

Why cultural competence is important for leaders nowadays?

Employee Motivation –

Productive employees are one of the key components that predict the financial success of a business and being a good leader means keeping employee motivation high. Cultural competence ensures that leaders will treat all employees in the same manner and will utilize all to the fullest regardless of their diverse backgrounds, leading to increased morale across the board, according to “BusinessWeek.”

View complete answer

What is the importance of cultural and intercultural competence?

What is intercultural competence? lntercultural competence is the ability to function effectively across cultures, to think and act appropriately, and to communicate and work with people from different cultural backgrounds – at home or abroad. Intercultural competence is a valuable asset in an increasingly globalised world where we are more likely to interact with people from different cultures and countries who have been shaped by different values, beliefs and experiences.

Intercultural competence is part of a family of concepts including global competence, graduate attributes, employability skills, global citizenship, education for sustainable development and global employability. Core to all these concepts is recognition of globalisation as a force for change in all aspects of the contemporary world, and the importance for graduates to be able to engage and act globally.

Adapted from Leung, K., Ang, S. and Tan, M.L. (2014), ‘Intercultural Competence’, Annual Review of Organizational Psychology and Organizational Behaviour, 1:4889-519.
View complete answer