Building Bridges, Overcoming Biases, Communicating Effectively

Sunday, October 17
4:00 PM – 5:30 PM (Central Time)
CE: 1.0
Level 2 (intermediate knowledge/experience)
Activity Code: 163666


Imagine a river called bias separating communicators and audiences on opposing banks. These unconscious biases, prejudices, and stereotypes form barriers to effective communication, affecting dietetics professionals in all practice and educational settings. They include negative perceptions based on race, body size, age, gender, disability, education, economic class, and more. This session will examine their impact on dietetics practice and education in clinical, community, and collegiate settings, as well as ways these issues have intensified due to the pandemic. The session will shift from problem to solution as we build bridges using evidence-based approaches to overcoming biases. These include self-awareness, acknowledging discomfort, promoting diversity, practicing cultural humility, building relationships, demonstrating empathy and respect, asking appropriate questions, listening and observing, collaboration, and more. These bridges effectively connect communicators and audiences, overcome biases, promote equity and social responsibility, and allow for communication to meet needs, solve problems, and change lives.

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe the prevalence and negative impact of unconscious biases and stereotypes on the effectiveness of communication in dietetics practice and education focusing on clinical, community, and collegiate settings.
  • Detail evidence-based strategies for building bridges that connect communicators and audiences, overcome biases, and create collaborative and effective communication.
  • Prioritize practical steps dietetics professionals can take for building awareness of personal biases, acquiring additional knowledge and skills, and determining specific action steps to overcome biases and communicate effectively.

Performance Indicators:

  • 2.3.2 Considers and respects the opinions, creativity, values, beliefs and perspectives of others.
  • 1.7.3 Develops awareness of one’s own personal beliefs and values to inform and reduce biases
  • 4.2.4 Investigates alternative explanations for deficits or challenges and considers alternative methods and provides justification for
    selected option(s).