Doctoral Dissertations

Orcid ID

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Counselor Education

Major Professor

Melinda M. Gibbons

Committee Members

Laura S. Wheat, Megan Haselschwerdt, Jennifer Morrow


Culturally and linguistically diverse students (CLDS) are among the fastest growing population in U.S. schools. Researchers have examined how best to support adolescent CLDS with little attention to the socioemotional needs of elementary CLDS. The Multicultural Social Justice Counseling Competencies provide a framework for understanding the complex nature of counseling practice, balancing micro- and macro-level practice. Creative interventions have been successfully used with various populations who share similar communicative barriers to service. However, little is known about how school counselors meet the socioemotional needs of CLDS and what factors contribute to the use of creative interventions in school counseling. One hundred and eight school counselors and school counseling interns with experience in an elementary school were surveyed. This study examined the impact of CLDS specific knowledge, school counselor’s advocacy interventions, self-efficacy with CLDS, and multilingualism on school counselor's use of creative interventions with elementary CLDS. Multiple regression and correlations were used to assess the relationships between all constructs. Advocacy intervention, CLDS specific knowledge, size of CLDS population, and years of experience contributed significantly to school counselor's use of creativity with CLDS. Although self-efficacy was significantly correlated with all constructs, it was not significant in the regression model. Participants also served non-CLDS with creative interventions at a higher rate than CLDS. Therefore, to further meet the diverse needs of CLDS, school counselors must enhance their CLDS knowledge and engage in micro and macro-level advocacy interventions. School counselor training programs must ensure that students have practice with CLDS and enhance training in social justice advocacy. This study's results increase our understanding of how best to support CLDS while also highlighting the training needs of student counselors.

Available for download on Thursday, August 15, 2024

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