Syllabi

These syllabi have been submitted by university professors teaching courses relevant to Cultural-Clinical Psychology.

 

  1. Dere, Jessica (University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada)

Cultural-Clinical Psychology, Undergraduate, 2014

This course will provide students with an in-depth introduction to the field of cultural-clinical psychology. We will examine recent empirical efforts to address the complex interactions between cultural factors and psychopathology, incorporating an interdisciplinary perspective. Students will be asked to engage with both seminal works in the field, as well as cutting-edge lines of research. The overarching aim is to gain an increased understanding of the multifaceted inter-play between culture and mental health, with a focus on implications for the study and treatment of psychopathology.

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.


  1. Gone, Joseph (University of Michigan, MI, USA)

Culture & Mental Health, Undergraduate, 2015

This seminar will examine the cultural foundations of mental health research and intervention, attending to the significant implications of a substantive cultural analysis for the cross-cultural assessment and treatment of psychopathology. Foci of the course will include attention to the conceptual and methodological study of cultural meaning and practice; the prospects for identifying and distinguishing between universal kinds of psychopathology and locally variant cultural syndromes; and the comparison of the modern psychotherapies with alternative healing traditions in cultural terms. Several examples will be drawn from the experiences of Indigenous/Native/Aboriginal communities in the U.S. and Canada. A central dilemma considered throughout the course will be whether and how the techniques and technologies of contemporary professional clinical intervention might be appropriately adapted and/or adopted for use with distinctive cultural communities in an increasingly globalized world. This course is designed for upper-level undergraduate students in psychology and in the social and health sciences.

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.


  1. Lau, Anna (University of California Los Angeles, CA, USA)

Asian American Personality and Mental Health, Undergraduate, 2014

This course introduces various topics related to Asian American identity and mental health including ethnic identity, cultural values, stereotypes, intergroup relations, family process, acculturation, child development, educational issues, psychopathology, and mental health treatment. The goals of the course are three-fold:  (1) to explore issues in Asian American psychology, particularly the cultural and societal influences that shape personality and mental health, (2) to analyze psychological research pertinent to Asian Americans, and (3) to develop critical thinking skills on research and theory related to Asian American psychology.  The course will consist of lectures, in-class discussions, and videos to illustrate the concepts. In addition, the material will be applied in the analysis of a case study presented in one of two non-fiction books.

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.


  1. Lau, Anna (University of California Los Angeles, CA, USA)

Psychology of Diversity, Graduate, 2015

This is a core course required for the psychology graduate minor in Diversity Science. The goal of this course is to provide you with an introduction to empirical research and theories in psychology and related disciplines that consider “how people create, interpret, and maintain group differences among individuals, as well as the psychological and societal consequences of these distinctions” (Plaut, 2010).  We will cover research topics spanning disparities in health and mental health, intergroup relations and conflict, social identity and social cognition, and diversity in development across the lifespan and across social and cultural contexts. We will critically examine research questions from both the majority and minority perspectives.  The goal of the seminar is to provide students with a primer on selected lines of inquiry across sub-specializations in psychology to encourage a more comprehensive approach to the study of psychological processes in diverse societies.  

We realize that some students may have had significant exposure to some or many of these topics and readings, while the material will be new to others.  Across disparate levels of background preparation, we expect students to be able to work toward a new level of reflection, analysis, and synthesis of these topics and to individualize their course of study to enrich their own research progress.   


While research that falls under the umbrella of diversity science has grown rapidly in recent years, the field is very much in its infancy. One thing we will do throughout this course is to consider what the emerging field of diversity science should look like – to set an agenda for future scholarly inquiry.  We will work to prioritize among a range of potential research questions taking into account what we know, what we need to know, what tools we have to answer these questions, and how the findings can be applied address critical social problems.

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.


  1. Norasakkunkit, Vinai (Gonzaga University, WA, USA)

Culture and Mental Health, Undergraduate, 2016

This seminar is an attempt to survey a new and emerging field called cultural-clinical psychology, in which “culture, mind, and brain constitute one another as a multi-level dynamic system in which no level is primary, and that psychopathology is an emergent property of that system” (Ryder & Chentsova-Dutton, 2011, p. 960). To quote the father of modern cultural psychology, Richard Shweder, “Suffering takes on form when it becomes organized and meaningful and is experienced and expressed as suffering of a certain kind…” (p. 315). In other words, how we experience mental suffering is largely informed by the the ideas and meaning systems that are accessible to us within the cultural context in which we live and participate. Since there is no comprehensive textbook for this course, your weekly readings will come out of scientific journal articles which can be downloaded by clicking on the links for each paper below. We will also be reading paperback book by Ethan Watters: “Crazy Like Us: The Globalization of the American Psyche.” Many of the studies we will discuss will compare East Asians with Westerners, primarily because that is where the psychological data are largely available and because psychology is still not a very popular field of study in other non-Western cultural contexts. Finally, we will also try to have a teleconference discussion with at least one of the authors of your readings.

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.


  1. Rasmussen, Andrew (Fordham University, NY, USA)

Global Mental Health, Graduate, 2016

The emerging field of Global Mental Health combines elements of cultural and clinical psychology, epidemiology, public health, human rights and international development to address a “mental health gap” between high- and middle- and low-income countries. This course provides a survey of models, mechanisms, and critiques surrounding Global Mental Health. Materials are drawn from the burgeoning global mental health literature (e.g., Vikram Patel, Jorgen Ünützer, Helena Verdeli), transcultural psychiatry (Authur Kleinman, Laurence Kirmayer), post-conflict psychosocial mental health field (Alistair Ager, Joop de Jong), and mental health capacity building. A section on methods in the middle of the course provides opportunities for students to review research design. Requirements will include weekly reflection papers, a term paper, and a final exam.


Students are encouraged to critique, criticize and question all readings, implicit assumptions, and even professorial utterances throughout the course. This is a course for your arguments and opinions (suitably supported, of course).

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.


  1. Ryder, Andrew (Concordia University, Montreal, Canada)

Cultural-Clinical Psychology, Undergraduate/Graduate, 2015

This course explores the interrelationship between culture, mind, and brain, and its implications for mental health. There is a tendency in psychology to assume that broad human similarities should be the primary focus, and that culture is a detail that does not exert much influence on these broad similarities. Cultural psychology, by contrast, takes the position that these similarities should be acknowledged, but should not be allowed to override the vast psychological variation that is observed across diverse human groups. In recent years, there has been a move to integrate the theoretical perspectives and methodological techniques to clinical psychology. The resulting sub-discipline, cultural-clinical psychology, is the focus of this course.

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.


  1. Soto, José (Pennsylvania State University, PA, USA)

Multicultural Perspectives in Clinical Psychology, Graduate, 2015

This course is intended to provide students with a broad overview of some the key issues involved in approaching psychology (especially in clinical/counseling psychology) from a perspective that is mindful of the diversity in today’s society. We will explore the meaning and value of such concepts as culture, ethnicity, bias, and cultural (or multicultural) competence as they pertain to the practice of psychology. In so doing, the objectives of this course are as follows:

  1. To ground students in theories associated with multiculturalism and diversity.
  2. To acquaint students with the some of the historical and sociopolitical contexts surrounding multicultural psychology.
  3. To increase students’ cultural awareness of their own and others’ worldviews.
  4. To enhance students’ skills in conducting culturally sensitive research and becoming culturally competent in applied settings.

In order to accomplish these objectives we will take a multidimensional approach towards learning. From this perspective, learning happens in three domains/areas: knowledge, skills and attitudes. We will focus on each of these at different times in the semester, but the idea is that each of these components is equally important to the learning process.

This class is NOT intended to be a comprehensive review of multicultural/diversity issues. Although we will be emphasizing the cultural aspect of diversity, there are several other important considerations when studying diversity (gender, sexual orientation, SES, etc.). Each of these topics can take up an entire semester. Therefore, this class should be seen as the beginning of a learning process that hopefully will continue throughout your lives and careers.

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.


  1. Wang, Shu-wen (Haverford, PA, USA)

Cultural Psychology, Undergraduate, 2016

This course provides an overview of theory and research on cultural variation in human development, social behavior, personality, motivation, cognition and perception, emotion, and physical and mental health. We also address cultural identities and examine race and ethnicity, immigrant experiences, and acculturation. While part of this course requires some self-exploration and application to personal experience, students are advised that the emphasis of the course is primarily on critically examining the theory and research in cultural psychology as a science.

For PDF of full syllabus, click here.

 

 

Advertisements