Date of Graduation

5-2019

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Counselor Education (PhD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Rehabilitation, Human Resources and Communication Disorders

Advisor

Kristi Perryman

Committee Member

Paul Blisard

Second Committee Member

Erin Kern Popejoy

Third Committee Member

Leslie Jo Shelton

Keywords

Counseling, Diversity, Experiential learning, Expressive arts, Multicultural

Abstract

Counseling governing bodies have defined what should be prioritized in multicultural counseling courses, including students’ multicultural knowledge and awareness; however, best practice regarding how to teach these multicultural concepts has largely been left up to the counselor educator. Counselor educators have begun implementing expressive arts techniques in the classroom, but very little literature exists related to using such techniques in a multicultural course in a manner that positively influence counseling students’ multicultural competency.

The purpose of this study was to explore master’s-level counseling students’ experience of expressive arts techniques utilized during their multicultural counseling course. Ten student participants took part in this study. Transcendental phenomenological inquiry guided the research design. Using phenomenological reduction, findings were synthesized into thematic labels, individual textural and structural descriptions, and a final essence of the participants’ lived experience. Thematic labels resultant from data analysis included process over product, comfort in discomfort, connection, emotional evolution, experiential process, identity, and multiculturalism. The findings reveal implications for counselor educators and counselor education programs. Recommendations for future research are also included.

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