Georgia Yu


Religion and spirituality is often an overlooked feature of culture and diversity. Robust research suggests that that religion and spiritual beliefs and practices of clinicians and clients can influence the treatment process and provide benefits to overall mental health and psychological well-being. This dissertation study provides an overview of the religious and spiritual beliefs, practices, and affiliations of psychologists compared to the general population. A specific focus is placed on that of mental health professionals and students of Asian and Asian-American descent, particularly given the religious and spiritual diversity among this ethnic group. Despite nearly 3 decades of research among Asians and Asian Americans, there is still very little known about this group of mental health professionals and how religious and spiritual belief systems and practices influence education, training, and service provision. This study found that individuals generally endorsed a higher degree of spiritual rather than religious salience, which was consistent with national surveys of psychologists but slightly less than the general population. Furthermore, specific education and clinical training experiences did not appear to have an effect on individuals' religious and spiritual beliefs, nor did they feel religious/spiritual issues were addressed frequently or adequately. These findings may increase insight into how specific populations of clinicians and students address religious/spiritual beliefs and practices in their personal and professional lives and how to best increase sensitivity of diversity issues in this area.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (EdD) -- Psychology; Psychology and religion; Psychotherapy -- Religious aspects; Asian American mental health personnel; Psychologists, Minority

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Shafranske, Edward;