Almost no literature compares current approaches to teaching cultural issues across U.S. psychiatry residency programs; the authors addressed this comparison.
The authors administered semistructured interviews of 20 instructors with substantial experience in the teaching of cultural issues in U.S. psychiatry residency programs, regarding the content, teaching techniques, institutional context, and evaluation of their curricula over time.
Approaches varied according to the local populations served and the background of the instructors, all of whom were either cross-trained in social sciences and humanities or were themselves ethnic, racial, or sexual minorities. Common themes emerged, including the use of experiential approaches, the lack of integration of cultural issues into clinical supervision or courses on other topics, and the absence of formal course evaluation.
Findings indicate a need for integration of cultural concepts into a variety of settings throughout residency, for development of faculty who are cross-trained in social sciences and humanities, and for curriculum-evaluation strategies.