Course Description

Individuals are naturally drawn to others who share their own cultural identity. Similarly, practitioners seek clients with the same cultural beliefs and identities. As we strive for more diversity and inclusion, it is important for the practitioner to understand and be sensitive to other cultures and beliefs when interacting with others.  There may be a natural discomfort experienced when there is a lack of exposure to diverse individuals. This workshop strives to alleviate some of the stress associated with supporting someone from a dissimilar cultural background by tackling the concept of cultural competency head on.

Effective communication is built on one’s willingness, desire, and ability to share information with another individual. Culturally competent communication goes one step further by offering a form of empathetic, unbiased, and respectful communication when interacting with an individual who may be different from oneself. 

This program is designed for anyone who seeks to understand how cultural beliefs inform behavior and how to show sensitivity to those beliefs through communication.  Culturally Competent Communication is designed for Health and Wellness Coaches, Leadership Coaches, Facilitators, DEI Practitioners, and Organizational Change Leaders.

Course Outline

Module 1: Introduction to Cultural Competency

The first module will introduce participants to cultural competency by looking at the primary and secondary dimensions of diversity.  Participants will engage in an open discussion about these dimensions and how they have been influenced in their lives by their lived experiences and beliefs.  Cultural competency will be defined as it relates to the following:

  • awareness of the participants’ cultural identity, beliefs, and values
  • knowledge and acceptance of different cultural practices
  • attainment of cross-cultural skills.

Module 2: Define Yourself Culturally  

In Module 2, the participants will be asked to take several self-assessments to uncover their own implicit biases and how they have determined their behaviors and choices.  They will further define themselves and describe their cultural identity in a small group setting.  These self-awareness exercises are critical to the participants’ understanding of how their cultural experiences may influence their professional interactions.

Module 3: Strategies for Approaching Cultural Sensitivity

Module 3 will focus on the participants’ emotional intelligence and empathy. They will identify their strengths and determine areas for development to ensure that communication with their clients is offered in a non-judgmental and culturally sensitive manner.  Within a small group setting, participants will be provided an opportunity to identify specific cultural aspects within their clients that may influence each client’s  behavior.

Module 4: Culturally Competent Communication

Module 4 focuses on effective cross-cultural communication.  It will define the components of communication, such as verbal/non-verbal communication, listening practices, love languages, learning styles, and cultural influences. The participants will engage in small and large group dialogue to discuss the results of self-assessments.

Module 5: Competent Engagement with Cultural Intelligence

Practice Makes Progress!  In Module 5, participants will engage in small group exercises to work on scenario-based case studies that will incorporate all of the cultural concepts that have been presented previously. This module will provide an opportunity to put the participant’s understanding of cultural competence to the test by first identifying and then responding to clients who represent cultural experiences that may be different from their own.

Module 6: The Way Ahead: How will Cultural Competency Influence Your Professional Practices?

In this final module, participants will design and present a method of inquiry to ensure that they gain an understanding of their client’s cultural perspective.  This tool will enhance their professional interaction to be empathetic and non-judgmental.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this training, participants will be able to:

  • Understand and apply culturally competent communication in their professional practices
  • Describe their own cultural identity, values, beliefs, and biases through the use of standardized assessment tools
  • Identify cultural beliefs and values unique to their clients through the use of standardized assessment tools
  • Recognize the impact that a client’s cultural beliefs and values have on their behavior
  • Adapt their professional practices in response to their clients’ cultural perspective

Meet instructors Freddi Brown, NBC-HWC and Dr. Joni Johnson, MD, NBC-HWC and learn more about Culturally Competent Communication via the ITL Podcast.


Graduates from the School of Continuing Studies at Georgetown University are eligible for a 10% alumni discount on select ITL courses, workshops, and seminars (certificate programs excluded). Send an email to ITLprograms@georgetown.edu to learn about your eligibility.

Early Registration
Participants who register at least 21 days prior to the course start date will receive a 10% tuition discount. Please note that only one tuition discount can be applied at time of registration.

Course Registration
This course is an open enrollment course. No application is required and registration is available by clicking "Add to Cart." Current students must register with their Georgetown NetID and password. New students will be prompted to create an account prior to registration.

Please review the refund policies in our Student Handbook before completing your registration.

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