Enhancing Reflective Practice: Recognizing Implicit Bias and Deepening Your Cultural Competence 4 CE hours

*Satisfies the new Cultural Competency CE Requirement in Oregon



In this workshop we will explore how the therapist’s identity, background and past experiences can affect interactions with people who are different from them in various ways, including and especially their clients. We will discuss implicit or unconscious bias as it applies to many “categories,” such as race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, age and physical condition. Of course, the goal of this workshop is not to eliminate biases, an impossible task, but to increase awareness of them so that they do not interfere with the client’s progress.

The challenge is that therapists often see themselves as fair and decent people. They are also in positions of power so they may miss the bias that occurs, especially if it is unconscious. Moreover, clients are less likely to confront their therapist due to this power dynamic. We will discuss steps therapists can take to reduce bias or at least, the impact of bias. Film clips will be used to encourage small and large group discussions.


Define and recognize implicit bias and microinsults/invalidations

Explain how the professional’s biases can impact decision-making

Review obstacles to honest self-examination

Identify ways to reduce the impact of implicit bias and microinsults/invalidations

Describe the importance of “cultural auditing” throughout the professional relationship