Engagement in Cross-Cultural Clinical Practice: Narrative Analysis of First Sessions


By bhadmin February 2, 2021

Based on a larger process-outcome study on cross-cultural clinical practice, this report focuses on the client-practitioner engagement process during the first session in cross-cultural therapy. Nine cases with complete pre- and post-treatment measures, process measures, and verbatim session transcripts were selected. The cases represent a wide variety of client-practitioner ethno-cultural differences. The outcome of these cases was determined by a combination of objective and subjective measures. Client-practitioner interaction processes were subject to complex coding and process analysis, following a narrative research strategy, to discover patterns associated with positive cross-cultural engagement. Results showed that positive engagement is associated with effectively communicated cognitive understanding of the client’s needs and concerns, emotional attunement, and appropriate handling of specific cultural experiences.

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