Cultural Competence and Ethical Issues

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Cultural Competence

Cultural competence entails understanding and responding in the right way to the unique combination of the variables of culture and the broad dimensions of diversity that the professional brings to different interactions (Ranzijn, 2009).

Culture and Diversity

Culture and its diversity can involve many factors, and these include disability, age, ethnicity, disability, gender identity, religion, race, sexual orientation, and veteran status. Language is an important aspect in cultural background, and it is well known that linguistic diversity in many cases results in cultural diversity (McCausland, 2004). Cultural competence has enabled the responsiveness to the linguistic and cultural differences that may affect management, assessment, identification and treatment of persons.

Ethical Issues and Cultural Competence

This allows one to be in a position to eliminate some of the issues that affect cultural competence. The issues being enlisted in this case are issues that deal with ethics, and they affect an individual's ability to perform to the best of their knowledge due to certain reservations they may have. I have to put aside any form of discrimination that may be aimed at delivery of services and also research due to a person's age, race, sex, religion, culture, and language (Ranzijn, 2009). It is also important for me as a professional not to engage in any form of conduct that will adversely reflect on other professionals; it is, therefore, important for me to protect the interest of my profession and the people who work and serve in the same line of work.

Issues Hinder Competence in Professionalism

These are some of the issues that hinder competence in professionalism; they are mostly issues to do with the ethical background of a person and the ability of that individual to rid themselves from the beliefs and the biases that they may have against others. It helps to give the professional a character that is exemplary (Riquelme, 2013).

Social, Institutional and Historical Factors

Cultural competence is always developing it is an ongoing process since it has to consider how values and norms are shaped in the society. The involvement of self-awareness and also cultural humility in most cases require professionals to give certain recognition to what they are not aware of when it comes to the communities, languages, and cultures of the individuals and families they serve (Riquelme, 2013). This, in turn, results in this professional who is mostly audiologists to seek out certain knowledge and experience in these cultures to enable them to understand and come up with the correct derivatives properly.

Continuous Learning and Appreciation

Upon acquiring this elusive knowledge, a professional in their line of work can continuously give appreciation to the cultural patterns and variations of the people they serve (Golash-Boza, 2016). They do this since they learn new things about different people they did not know about it helps to give perspective, and it assists a person to be able to learn and get exposed to different things such as language and cultural behavior. The professional is also able to self-scrutinize to assess their own and other cultural biases and also to improve their self-awareness (Golash-Boza, 2016). This is a good way to help the professional to eliminate prejudice once they can look into their character, the aim here is to be neutral and impartial. It is the best way for a person to conduct themselves.

Evidence-Based Practice and Sensitivity

A culturally competent professional is also able to utilize evidence-based practice that includes the patient's characteristics and empirical evidence by the professional. The practitioner should be able to be sensitive toward the patient, but they should not be emotional since they could be taken advantage of by those who may have an ill motive. These are some of the issues that are encompassed in cultural competence; it is, therefore, important to ensure that as a professional that one is not vulnerable and easily manipulated.

Understanding Communication Contexts

The professional should also be very keen to understand the contexts in communication, and this entails giving considerations towards the patients' families regarding communication disorders. This will give the practitioner an understanding of how these factors may influence perceptions of communication patterns and abilities (Gibson, 2015). Communication is vital to the professional to enable them to better understand their environment and also the people whom they serve in their line of profession. It creates a sense of professionalism and competence which are key to having a successful work output without communication the whole exercise would be futile.

Utilizing Available Resources and Collaboration

It is also important for the professional to be able to use every resource they may have access to including referral and inter-professional collaboration when necessary to ensure that they have relayed quality services (Hofstede, 2011). It is possible that one person may not have all the tools needed to give the best possible outcome to one who needs professional assistance and it is, therefore, a good idea to make sure that one has the best interest of the patient at heart. The humane thing to do would be to assist the patient to the best of one's knowledge to enable them to access quality services.

Maintaining Professional Relationships

The relationship between other professionals is also vital to the practitioner, and this is due to various factors (Hofstede, 2011). One can acquire skills that they did not have before; it also provides a platform for one to share ideas among the professionals. It is therefore important for one to eliminate any form of discrimination toward students, assistants, colleagues and support personnel. These discriminations may be toward gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity, culture, socio-economic status, language, and other factors.

Principles applied to Establish and Build Collaborative Partnerships

The practitioners should be able to learn about the client's language, culture, history, experiences, power differentials and alternative sources of care (Carlson, 2013). This is about boosting the competence of the professional and to avoid being caught flat-footed, the patient should also be in a position to provide information that will help them to receive quality services. The professional should also ensure that they are capable of demonstrating respect for a client's cultural background by integrating their cultural practices and personal preference into the treatment and assessment of that patient.

Understanding the Dynamic Nature of Culture

Professionals should also be able to develop a dynamic system of what constitutes culture. It can not only be looked upon in one way or be defined in one way since it is dynamic and it encompasses a great many things (Carlson, 2013). It is therefore upon the practitioner to ensure that they do research into this and that they go further to find out the meaning of culture. It is also key for one to put aside ethnocentrism and eliminate that one's way of life and belief are superior to that of others. This may damage the relationship between colleagues and clients.


Cultural competence is a vital part of professionalism it is paramount toward an individual performing their duties to their fullest. Culture is something that a person learns, and a person's ability to learn culture depends on how open-minded they are to other people and situations. This also improves a person's perspective in life and makes them knowledgeable about life.


Carlson, B. (2013). The “new frontier”: Emergent Indigenous identities and social media. In M. Harris, M. Nakata & B. Carlson (Eds.), the Politics of Identity: Emerging Indigeneity (pp. 147-168). Sydney: University of Technology Sydney E-Press 

Golash-Boza, T. (2016, April). A Critical and Comprehensive Sociological Theory of Race and Racism. Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, 2(2), 129-141

Hofstede, G. (2011). Dimensionalizing cultures: The Hofstede model in context. Online Readings in Psychology and Culture, 2 (1).

McCausland, R. (2004). Special Treatment: The Representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People in the Media. Journal of Indigenous Policy 4, 84-98.

Ranzijn, R., McConnochie, K. R., & Nolan, W. (2009). Introduction to cultural competence. In Psychology and Indigenous Australians: foundations of cultural competence (pp. 3- 12). South Yarra, VIC : Palgrave/Macmillan

Riquelme, L. (2013). Cultural competence for everyone: A shift in perspectives. Perspectives on Gerontology, 18 (2), 42–49

November 13, 2023

Culture Sociology

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Ethnicity Diversity

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