School Counselors and Their Multicultural Counseling Competence and Awareness of the National Achievement Gap: A National Study

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Virginia Tech


There has been a considerable amount of research focused on the multicultural counseling competence (MCC) of counselors, but research examining the MCC of school counselors looking at school counselors' awareness of the national achievement gap has been quite sparse. The current study was conducted to fill this gap. One hundred and sixty five American School Counselor Association (ASCA) members participated in the current study. The study was a web survey where each participant was contacted through email and invited to participate by Survey Monkey, an on-line survey tool. Survey Monkey was used to post the survey and demographic questionnaire and collect the data. The Multicultural Counseling Competence and Training Survey-Revised (MCCTS-R) (Holcomb-McCoy & Day-Vines, 2004) was used to examine the perceived MCC of school counselors. A Demographic Questionnaire was also added consisting of questions regarding variables such as race/ethnicity, gender, school level, and school urbanicity and questions that examined school counselors' awareness of the national achievement gap. The results of the current study suggested that school counselors possessed a self-perceived MCC between somewhat competent and competent. The results also suggested that school counselors who had taken a Master's level or specialty course on multicultural counseling possessed a higher MCC than those who had not, school counselors of Color were found to possess a higher MCC than their White counterparts, and gender was found to have no significant relationship with MCC. In addition, the results suggested that school counselors were aware of the national achievement gap, believed in the importance of being aware of the national achievement gap, were committed to activities aimed at closing the achievement gap, and believed that it was the duty of school counselors to participate in activities aimed at closing the gap. Finally, using the Marlowe-Crowne Social Desirability Scale (M-C SDS), the results suggested that social desirability may have played a small role in the results of the MCCTS-R.



School Counselors, Multicultural Counseling, Achievement Gap, Race, Ethnicity