Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)


Graduate Department of Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

Rodger K. Bufford, PhD

Second Advisor

Glena Andrews, PhD

Third Advisor

Kathleen Gathercoal, PhD


Cultural Humility is a vital component of healthy attitudes characterized by lack of superiority towards other’s cultural experiences (Hook, Davis, Owen, Worthington, & Utsey, 2013). To date, no published research has examined the impact of cultural competency training on the development of Cultural Humility and Grace among doctoral psychology students. Utilizing Hook et al.’s definition of Cultural Humility, this study examined how participation in an American Psychological Association accredited clinical psychology program affected the Cultural Humility and Grace of enrolled students.

Data were collected from students, faculty, and clinical supervisors across three training settings during the 2017-2018 academic year. Students and faculty completed measures developed for this study. Student self-ratings included a Cultural Experiences Measure, Cultural Humility Scale, and the Dimensions of Grace Scale (Bufford, Sisemore, & Blackburn, 2017). Faculty evaluated students utilizing the Cultural Humility Scale. Clinical Supervisor ratings were obtained from archival data that documented achievement of APA competencies.

Findings revealed similar underlying concepts between Cultural Experiences, Cultural Humility, and Grace while shedding light on the decline in Grace to Others, that may be attributed to developmental processes and stressors of rigorous professional training, competition for resources and rearranging of faith. Grace and Cultural Humility were found to be somewhat related; specifically, Grace to Others was positively related to Cultural Humility. A small negative correlation was found between students’ program year and level of Grace. No correlation was found between students’ year in the program and levels of Cultural Experience or Cultural Humility. Analysis of covariance found no changes in Cultural Experience or Cultural Humility from Time1 to Time2. Grace scores were significantly lower for Grace to Others at Time2. Gender effects revealed higher levels of Grace of God1 among male participants which could reflect a paternalistic view of God, religious and cultural views of men being the spiritual leader of the family or head of the household. Conversely, women scored higher on measures of Cultural Experiences and Cultural Humility. Age effects revealed older participants scored higher on Grace to Self3, which reflects a developmental process of self-acceptance.