Building cultural competence: A systematic evaluation of the effectiveness of culturally sensitive interventions with ethnic minority youth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations


Growing diversity within the US population accentuates the need for the development and implementation of culturally competent services in the field of child welfare. Despite this, few studies exist that examine the effectiveness of culturally sensitive interventions (CSIs) with ethnic minority populations, who are considerably more at risk of developing psychosocial problems including substance and alcohol abuse, delinquency, low academic achievement, and poor self-esteem. With the demand for evidence-based practice it is imperative that we examine the effectiveness of CSIs designed to prevent and treat youth problems. The main goal of this review was to systematically analyze the methodology of recent CSI research with populations of ethnic minority youth in order to evaluate each intervention's ability to adhere to existing standards of evidence-based practice. The fifteen CSI studies examined in this review illustrate progress in their attempt to adhere to the methodological rigor required of evidence-based practice. This review encourages the field of child welfare to position itself analogously with and embrace the movement toward building cultural competence by further investigating the effectiveness of culturally-sensitive interventions with ethnic minority youth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1192-1198
Number of pages7
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2009



  • Child welfare
  • Culturally sensitive interventions
  • Ethnic minority youth
  • Evidence-based practice
  • Literature review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

Cite this