, Volume 32, Issue 4, pp 320-326
Date: 11 Jan 2014

Training Researchers in Cultural Psychiatry: The McGill-CIHR Strategic Training Program

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The authors aim to summarize the pedagogical approaches and curriculum used in the training of researchers in cultural psychiatry at the Division of Social and Transcultural Psychiatry at McGill University.


We reviewed available published and unpublished reports on the history and development of the McGill cultural psychiatry programs to identify the main orientations (conceptual and methodological), teaching methods, curriculum and course content. Student evaluations of teaching were reviewed. Follow-up data on research and other academic activities and employment of trainees who graduated from the program was obtained by e-mail questionnaire.


The McGill program includes a Master of Science program, an intensive summer school, annual Advanced Study Institutes, and the McGill-CIHR Strategic Training Program in Culture and Mental Health Services Research. The interdisciplinary training setting emphasizes the cultural history and embedding of psychiatric knowledge and practice; the social construction of ethnicity, race, and cultural identity; the impact of globalization, migration, and ideologies of citizenship on individual identity and the configuration of cultural communities; and the integration of quantitative and qualitative ethnographic methods in basic and evaluative research.


This critical transdisciplinary approach provides researchers with conceptual tools to address the impact of the changing meanings of culture and ethnicity difference in the contemporary world on mental health services.