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Law & Ethics 11: Diversity Competence

Avatar: Diversity Competence in Psychology Practice

Course Description

A six-hour course with Jonathan Young and Anne Bach

This course meets the Law & Ethics requirement for re-licensure.

Law & Ethics 11 ~ Diversity Competence

Each client brings a complex identity and unique gifts. Professional ethics include an appreciation of diversity. Our responsibilities include developing and maintaining cultural sensitivity. We seek to respect the rich differences among our clients, and respond appropriately. This course is designed for psychologists, LMFTs, LCSWs and other mental health professions.

Depth psychology has a long history of diversity research. Carl Jung did field work in Africa and India. He explored native American lore with a Pueblo Indian elder. We will also draw on comparative studies done by Joseph Campbell.

Law and Ethics 11 ~ Diversity Competence focuses on ethical issues in cross-cultural psychotherapy. We will discuss the 2017 film Avatar as a story about encountering otherness. Clinicians strive to stay alert to culturally-shaped emotional reactions. Developing inclusive perspectives includes acceptance of inner and outer uniqueness.

Avatar, arrow shaft

Learning Objectives

  • Explain ethical issues unique to cross-cultural depth psychology.

  • Examine how therapists can be seen differently by various cultural groups.

  • Elucidate behaviors that show respect to culturally different clients.

  • Describe ethical dimensions in the stages of cultural competence.

  • Recognize unconscious aspects of working with diverse populations.

  • Identify ways therapist’s ethics benefit from culturally responsive practices.

Who will benefit?

This seminar is designed to advance the skills of practicing doctoral-level psychologists. Presentations cover updates on clinical expertise. The day is also useful to other mental health practitioners and to certain helping professions, such as physicians, clergy, and educators with mental health counseling responsibilities.

CE Credit Information

The material is presented at an introductory level for psychologists, requiring no background in mythic studies, narrative theory, or Jungian psychology. No advance preparation is necessary. However, participants are provided with a recommended reading list as part of their class materials.

CE Credit information

The following CE credits are available:

  • Psychology, MFT, LCSW, LPCC, NBCC : 6 CE hours

  • Nursing : 7 hours

This course meets:

  • Six Law and Ethics hours for Psychologists, MFTs, LPCCs, LCSWs<, and MBCCs/p>

Avatar, the kiss

Day Schedule

Checking-in begins at 9:30 a.m. - Seminar 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

9:30 Check-in begins.

10:00 Essentials of cultural competence:

- The psychodynamics of encounters with otherness

- The inner life of working with diverse populations

11:15 - Break (approximate time)

11:30 The unconscious in ethical practices

- Symbolism in stories of encountering otherness

- Demonstrating integrity in dealing with difference

12:30 - Lunch Break

- On your own, please return on time

1:30 Using reflective practices to enhance sensitivity:

- Writing as a bridge across differences

2:30 - Break (approximate time)

2:40 Dealing with projections well to reduce misunderstandings

- Thoughtful behaviors in awkward situations

- Ethical issues in cultural sensitivity

3:50 - Break (approximate time)

4:00 How therapists benefit from diverse encounters

- Repairing as deepening the bond

- Cultivating awareness to avoid liability

5:00 Course concludes - Be sure to sign out

How to Register

  1. Select a seminar location from the Current Seminar Dates and Locations

  2. Register online or call the Center

Avatar: A storm brews

Selections from the Reading List

Adams, Michael Vannoy (1996) The Multicultural Imagination: "Race", Color, and the Unconscious. London: Routledge

Brewster, Fanny (2017) African Americans and Jungian Psychology: Leaving the Shadows. London: Routledge

Duran, Eduardo (2006) Healing the Soul Wound: Counseling with American Indians and Other Native People. New York: Teachers College Press

Eleftheriadou, Zack (2018) Psychotherapy and Culture: Weaving Inner and Outer Worlds. London: Routledge

Kawai, Hayao (2006) Japanese Psyche: Major Motifs in the Fairy Tales of Japan. Thompson CT: Spring Publications

Sue, Derald Wing (2019) Counseling the Culturally Diverse: Theory and Practice 8th Edition. New York: Wiley

Avatar: Seminar in Diversity Practice with Jonathan Young


Jonathan Young, PhD is a psychologist (PSY10231) who consults with organizational leaders and arts professionals. He teaches at the Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara, where he created and chaired the unique doctoral level department of mythological studies. His books and articles focus on personal mythology. His background includes assisting mythologist Joseph Campbell at seminars and serving as founding curator of the Joseph Campbell Archives and Library. Dr Young is contributing producer and featured commentator on the History Channel’s Ancient Aliens television series.

Anne Bach, M.S., MFT 38891 is a specialist in uses of writing in psychotherapy. She gives presentations on creativity as inner work at major conferences, and lectures widely on psychological dimensions of expressive writing. Her clinical background includes poetry therapy with seriously mentally ill patients.

Other presentations on Mythic Stories

Dr. Young also gives frequent media interviews, public talks, workshops, and in-service trainings throughout the U.S. and internationally.