Effective Strategies for Teaching Cultural Competency to MSW Students in a Global Society
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Effective Strategies for Teaching Cultural Competency to MSW Students in a Global Society

Authors: W. Jay Gabbard, Saundra H. Starks, Jeremiah Jaggers, Amy C. Cappiccie


An ethical mandate of the social work profession in the United States is that BSW and MSW graduates are sufficiently prepared to both understand diverse cultural values and beliefs and offer services that are culturally sensitive and relevant to clients. This skill set is particularly important for social workers in the 21st Century, given the increasing globalization of the U.S. and world. The purpose of this paper is to outline a pedagogical model for teaching cultural competency that resulted in a significant increase in cultural competency for MSW graduates at Western Kentucky University (WKU). More specifically, this model is predicated on five specific culturally sensitive principles and activities that were found to be highly effective in conveying culturally relevant knowledge and skills to MSW students at WKU. Future studies can assess the effectiveness of these principles in other MSW programs across the U.S. and abroad.

Keywords: Cultural Competence, Social Work, Teaching

Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1077052

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