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What is Cultural Competency?

What is Cultural Competency?

Author: Craig Coletta

At the end of this tutorial, the learner will understand the concept of cultural competency

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Terms to Know
Cultural Competency

The ability to recognize when culture may be playing a part in a conflict or communication difficulty and the ability to raise the role of culture in a way that helps overcome the problem.

Cultural Fluency

The ability to function within a given culture as if one were native to that culture.

Cultural Immersion

Long-term nearly constant contact with the rules, norms, and worldviews of a different culture.


Forming a belief that certain general trends or traits of a group (culture) apply equally strongly to all individual members of that group; perceiving people as simplistic representatives of abstract cultural traits rather than as individuals.


The way a person interprets and makes decisions about his or her environment (world), including beliefs or assumptions about what is considered right or normal.