Building spiritual sensitivity through an online spirituality course

Ann M. Callahan, Kalea Benner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The National Association of Social Workers and Council on Social Work Education define cultural competence and acknowledge the role of spirituality within cultural experiences. Both describe cultural competence as a linear experience that begins with awareness and sensitivity, leading to competence. Understanding the role of spiritual sensitivity in building spiritual competence is essential in social work practice where spirituality informs both assessment and intervention. This qualitative study examines the experiences of 37 undergraduate students in an online spirituality course. Results reveal the emergence of spiritual sensitivity indicated by an awareness of spiritual diversity and need for spiritual competence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)182-201
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Religion and Spirituality in Social Work
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 3 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Taylor & Francis.


  • cultural competence
  • spiritual awareness
  • spiritual competence
  • spiritual sensitivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Religious studies
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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