Course Outline: Psychology 304

Course Information

  • Department: Psychology
  • Prepared By: Dr. Marya Howell-Carter
  • Prepared Date: Fall 2017
  • Course Title: Multicultural Psychology
  • Course Code: PSY 304
  • Credits: 3
  • Contact Hours: 45

Catalog Description

Reflecting the 21st century global theme of acculturation, PSY 304 will focus on the ways in which the study and practice of psychology intersect with race, culture, and diversity. Topics include racial/ethnic/religious group differences, cultural norms, gender and sexual orientation issues, family, structure, and identity development. Primary focus will be given to the ways that race and culture contribute to disparities in access to mental health treatment as well as differences in beliefs about mental illness and its treatment. Consistent with an applied psychology approach, the student will develop an understanding of how diversity issues affect the workplace, i.e., discrimination in hiring/firing practices, affirmative action laws, multicultural competence, and sensitivity training. Prerequisite(s): PSY 101. Credits: 3 (3,0)

  • Prerequisites: PSY 101, PSY 130, PSY 131 or permission of department chairperson.
  • Required For: None
  • Elective For: Applied Psychology Program
  • Required Text: Cross-Cultural Psychology: Critical Thinking and Contemporary Applications, 4th Edition by Shiraev and Levy, Allen and Bacon Publishing. 

Course Description

Reflecting the 21st century global theme of acculturation, PSY 304 will focus on the ways in which the study and practice of psychology intersect with race, culture, and diversity. Topics include racial/ethnic/religious group differences, cultural norms, gender and sexual orientation issues, family structure and identity development. Primary focus will be given to the ways that race and culture contribute to disparities in access to mental health treatment as well as differences in beliefs about mental illness and its treatment. Consistent with an applied psychology approach, the student will develop an understanding of how diversity issues affect the workplace, i.e., discrimination in hiring/firing practices, affirmative action laws, multicultural competence, and sensitivity training.

Course Objectives

By the end of the course, students will:

  1. Be able to discriminate between stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination.
  2. Understand the concept of stereotype threat.
  3. Understand the changing demographics of the United States and the changing patterns of cross-cultural interactions.
  4. Be able to identify the methods by which psychologists study culture, diversity, prejudice, discrimination and trends in mental health provision.
  5. Understand psychological testing and its potential for creating discrimination.  Students will further understand efforts within the field to create culturally sensitive assessment tools. 
  6. Be knowledgeable about effective techniques for reducing discrimination.
  7. Be able to identify specific ways that diversity issues affect the workplace including: discrimination in hiring/firing practices, affirmative action laws, multicultural competence, cultural competence/sensitivity training, and research uncovering the benefits of a diverse workplace.
  8. Be able to discuss various theories of ethnic identity development.
  9. Understand the disparities in access to mental health treatment.
  10. Be familiar with cultural differences in beliefs about mental illness and its treatment.
  11. Be able to describe the process of acculturation and the various dynamics/facets thereof.

Required Texts: (These are options available in the marketplace at this time)

  • Mio, J. S., Barker, & Tumambing, J. S. (2009). Multicultural psychology: Understanding our diverse communities (2nd ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.
  • Shiraev, E.B., and Levy, D. A. (2010). Cross-Cultural Psychology: Critical Thinking and Contemporary Applications (4th ed.). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Allyn & Bacon.
  • Hall, Gordon N. (2010). Multicultural Psychology, (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River New Jersey: Prentice Hall

Additional Web Resources

http://psychology.psy.msu.edu/cmpr/

http://www.csun.edu/~hbpsy011/

Teaching Methods

Course teaching methods will include lectures, video-recorded material, in-class activities, multi-media presentations, group activities, and discussion.

Methods of Evaluation

To be determined by the instructor. Exams and writing assignments will be included.

Disagreements or conflicts

In the event of a disagreement with any of the policies outlined above, the student is directed to address the issue with the instructor. In the event that the conflict cannot be resolved, it should be taken to the Psychology Department Chairperson, Dr. Gene Indenbaum (631-420-2725), for review.

Tutoring Services

The Tutoring Center provides individual and group tutoring opportunities for students requiring additional assistance with courses. The Tutoring Center also provides workshops on study skills, test-taking strategies, and note taking. The center is open Monday through Thursday, when classes are in session, and is located in Sinclair Hall Room 160.

Grade Scale:  
90-100% =A 70%-74%    =C
85-89% =B+ 65-69%      =D+
80-84% =B 60%-64%   =D
75%-79% =C+ BELOW 60  =F

Course Outline

Unit 1: Changing Demographics in the US and the world

  1. Changing Contact: how technology changes contact with other cultures
  2. Technology as it impacts stereotyping (stereotyped images in the media, etc.)

Unit 2: Defining diversity 

  1. Race/Ethnicity
  2. Religion
  3. Disability
  4. Gender
  5. Sexual orientation
  6. Affirmative Action

Unit 3: Research/Testing: Research methodology

  1. Bias in cross-cultural research
  2. Culture Free/Fair testing

Unit 4: Cultural Identity Development

Unit 5: Acculturation  

Unit 6: Racism/Discrimination/Prejudice

  1. History of group discrimination in the US

Unit 7: Racial/ethnic group differences

  1. Cultural norms
  2. Values and traditions
  3. Family structure/Child rearing
  4. Education values
  5. Cultural Communication: Body language, verbal and non-verbal communication

Unit 8: Stereotyping/Stereotype Avoidance/Stereotype Threat/Implicit Association Test

Unit 9: Social Psychology research on intercultural conflict and cultural contact

Unit 10: Mental health concerns 

  1. Treatment disparities
  2. Cultural beliefs about mental health problems and treatment

Unit 11: Benefits of multiculturalism in work groups, education, productivity, decision-making

Unit 12: Multicultural competence

  1. Multicultural/Sensitivity Training