model minority; college-age Asian Americans; counseling Asian Americans; literature review; multicultural psychology


A detailed examination of the past 10 years of literature regarding the counseling of college-age Asian Americans is undertaken, with an emphasis on counselor and client perspective. The applicability of Western counseling to individuals steeped in Asian culture is examined, and suggestions aimed towards increasing counselor competency provided. Counselors’ self-perceived competency and Asian American client experience are reviewed. The effects of acculturation and enculturation are discussed; with a special focus on the impact of Asian cultural values and their potential negative relationships with help-seeking attitudes. The nature, implementation, and efficacy of multicultural counseling is explored. Data comparing college-age Asian Americans to other groups is analyzed. Practical advice for counselors is given to help increase multicultural competence, and ameliorate Asian American clients’ counseling experience. Directions for future researchers based on current limitations are also enclosed, with a special focus on practice-based research and a directive to examine specific subsets of Asian cultural values individually, rather than holistically. Counselors are encouraged to utilized unique aspects of Asian culture in counseling, rather than forcing acculturation to occur. This review indicates that counselors who intentionally practice multicultural counseling can ameliorate the counseling process for college-age Asian American clients. It also urges researchers to conceptualize Asian culture not as a single value, but as multiple values (such as respect for authority, filial piety, etc.) in one domain.