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Teaching of Psychology


Sage Publications, Inc.

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Background Previous research shows that Multicultural Psychology courses can produce significant improvements in students’ cultural competence-related atttitudes in in-person and online courses. Objective We evaluated the impact of adding a skills-focused group assignment (i.e., Difficult Dialogues) to an online asynchronous Multicultural Psychology course. Method Undergraduate students filled out a battery of self-report measures at the beginning and end of the course. Of the 192 total students, 107 were in course sections which completed a Difficult Dialogue (DD) group project, and 85 were in the teaching as usual (TAU) section. Results Students in DD groups had significantly greater pre-to post-increases on social justice behavioral intentions and perceived behavioral control compared to TAU. There were no statistical differences between-groups on measures of other cultural competence constructs, though there were statistically significant within-group improvements on all outcome measures. Conclusion Results suggest that the DD project had a particular impact on improving social justice behavioral intentions and perceived behavioral control. Teaching Implications These shifts underscore the importance of including opportunities for students to learn and practice specific skills in Multicultural Psychology courses, and that online courses can effectively provide these opportunities.

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