Awakening a critical consciousness among multidisciplinary professionals supporting culturally and linguistically diverse families: a pilot study on the impact of professional development

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

In an increasingly globalised world there is need for professionals involved in providing services to children and families to be culturally competent. This pilot study explores the impact of attending a multidisciplinary professional development workshop based on the Six Principles of Culturally Competent Practice [Verdon, S. (2015a). Embracing diversity, creating equality: Supporting the speech, language and communication of culturally and linguistically diverse children (Unpublished doctoral thesis). Charles Sturt University, Bathurst, Australia] upon professionals’ cultural competence. There were 52 participants who completed pre-workshop questionnaires and post-workshop evaluations. Of these, two participated in in-depth follow-up interviews one year later to discuss the ongoing impact of professional development upon their practice. Pre-workshop, major challenges identified for working with culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) families were cultural and language barriers, and working with interpreters. After completing the workshop, participants reported gaining knowledge about engaging in holistic practice, their personal cultural competence and the culture of families they worked with. Interviews conducted one year later revealed the workshop had an ongoing impact upon practice in four key areas: (1) knowing the family (2) organisational structures (3) collaborative practice and (4) the ongoing nature of cultural competence. This article discusses the complexities of teaching cultural competence, problematic issues in conceptualisation and the efficacy of such workshops in developing a critical consciousness among professionals to engage in culturally responsive practice with CALD families.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalChild Care in Practice
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 08 Oct 2018

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