Date of Award

December 2017

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Educational Psychology

First Advisor

Shannon Chavez Korell

Committee Members

Nadya Fouad, Razia Azen, Jacqueline Nguyen


The discrepancy between the demographics of the American population and mental health providers means that providers will increasingly be called upon to work with clients who are different from the provider. This study evaluated the relationship between multicultural competence (MCC), ethnic identity, and worldview variables for Master’s level counseling students enrolled in an introductory multicultural counseling course. It also included an analysis of course factors. A total of 201 students completed the survey at both the beginning and end of the semester. Students reported higher levels of ethnic identity development at the end of the semester as compared to the beginning of the semester. Students also reported higher levels of MCC at the end of the semester on measures that assessed the attitudes underlying MCC, with no difference reported in reported scores on the California Brief Multicultural Competence Scale. Scores on the ColorBlind Racial Attitudes Scale were related to almost all measures of multicultural competence. There were also significant differences noted between students who identified as White or students of color. Results indicate that some self-report measures may assess different aspects of competence or confudence. Colorblind racial attitudes may be particularly important to address in introductory courses. Future research should further evaluate the relationship between self-report measures of MCC and the attitudes underlying MCC, as well as continuing to evaluate the relationship between ethnic identity development and MCC.