Psychology, Professional

Date of Paper/Work

Fall 10-17-2020

Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.)

Type of Paper/Work



Lenny Jennings, Bryana French


Race is one of many ways that humans are defined and socially positioned within the US culture. Literature on racial identity formation has been available for several decades; however, racial power and privilege has insulated many White researchers from contributing to the research with humility and openness. As a counseling psychologist, it was important to understand the impact of my racial presence on others on a relational level. Using an autoethnography approach allowed me to keep a journal for two years and examine internal struggles resulting from the ways that US culture has shaped my worldview (Ellis, 2004; Patton, 2015). My research aimed to contribute to the racial identity development literature with accountability and encourage White counselors to increase cultural competence through self-awareness, distress tolerance, and respectful dialogue. Through my analysis, I identified six practices (e.g., observe, own, inquire, reorganize, partner, reflect) that can help clarify internalized racial beliefs and change implicit biases that inhibit cross-racial relationships. I hope my research supports increased culturally competent practices and decreased racist ideology, microaggressions, and racial superiority in the field of psychology.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.