College of Education and Human Development

Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development

Michael Goh

  • Professor; Campbell Leadership Chair in Education and Human Development

Michael Goh

Areas of interest

Cultural intelligence (CQ)
Intercultural training and education
Cross-cultural perspectives of counseling and mental health
Helping skills for leadership in higher education and organizations
Leadership for inclusive excellence in higher education


PhD, University of Minnesota, counseling and student personnel psychology
MS, Indiana University, counseling, and counselor education
BA, Indiana University, psychology and sociology (double major)


From 2017-2022, I served as the University of Minnesota systemwide vice president for equity and diversity for the university’s five campuses. From 2014-2017, I was the associate vice provost for Equity and Diversity and director of the Institute for Diversity, Equity, and Advocacy (IDEA), whose mission is to sustain and support a diverse and interdisciplinary community of scholars who conduct research and produce scholarship on equity and diversity issues and topics.

My higher education focus is centered on intercultural competence and intercultural learning that promotes college student development and the delivery of culturally competent college counseling services. Having served in higher education administration as a senior leader, I am also curious about what constitutes culturally intelligent leadership and what cultivates inclusive excellence in higher education.

I grew up in Singapore and began my higher education journey as an international student at Indiana University, Bloomington. My interdisciplinary quest to understand intercultural competence has juxtaposed with psychology, sociology, counseling psychology, college student development, intercultural communication, teacher education, and diversity, equity, and inclusion in higher education. I am trained as a counseling psychologist and have provided mental health services to high school students, academic and career advising in the Martin Luther King Jr. program, and personal and career counseling at college counseling centers at the University of Minnesota and the University of California, Davis. I was also actively involved in starting the first university counseling service in Singapore and the first graduate training program for counselors in Singapore.

I consider myself an intercultural scholar and educator who applies an interculturalist or culturally intelligent framework on multicultural and international counseling psychology, teacher education, and diversity and inclusion work in higher education. I am particularly interested in international and intercultural issues in higher education. My teaching, research, and service have focused on discovering better ways to conceptualize, assess, and ultimately teach intercultural competence to improve access to mental health services for underserved populations. My research program includes cultural competence in mental health practice, cultural intelligence in teaching and counseling, multicultural master therapists, practice-based evidence, help-seeking behavior and attitudes across cultures and countries, culturally intelligent leadership, and diversity, equity, and inclusion leadership in higher education.

I am eager to work with students who are interested in:

  • Intercultural competence and cultural Intelligence in higher education
  • International education and internationalization of higher education
  • College Student Development, mental health, and well-being in higher education
  • Leadership development for higher education administration and diversity, equity, and inclusion

Courses taught

OLPD 3381 Developing Intercultural Competence (Fall & Spring)

OLPD 8702 Administration and Leadership in Higher Education

OLPD 5080 Helping Skills for College Student Development

OLPD 5080-501/8087-501—Surprising Singapore: Cultural Intelligence in a Culturally Diverse City-State (Study Abroad)

Selected Honors
  • Commissioner (At-Large Member). Midwestern Higher Education Compact. Appointed by Minnesota Governor Tim Walz. Term 2021-2025
  • Senior Fellow (Inaugural). Minnesota Institute for Trauma Informed Education. University of St. Thomas, Minnesota. 2021-present.
  • Champion of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. University of Minnesota Athletics. 2021.
  • Pacific Circle Consortium Honors Recognition. “For exemplary education and scholarly work across borders.” 2018.
  • Exemplary Diversity Leadership Award, American Counseling Association/Association for Multicultural Counseling and Development, 2010.
  • Outstanding Mentor Award, University of Minnesota Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, Office for Equity and Diversity, 2012.
  • Marty and Jack Rossmann Award for outstanding teaching, research, and service (Inaugural Recipient), College of Education and Human Development, University of Minnesota, 2010.
  • President’s Distinguished Faculty Mentor, University of Minnesota, 2008.
  • Dstinguished Teaching Award, College of Education and Human Development, University of Minnesota, 2006.
  • Distinguished Leadership in Psychology and Mental Health, Minnesota Psychological Association, 2006.
  • Teacher of the Year, Nanyang Technological University Singapore, 1998.

Selected Projects

  • National Science Foundation: Louis Stokes North Star STEM Alliance (NSSA). “To increase the number of students of color and American Indian students pursuing science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs of study and careers”. 
  • National Institute of Health Partners in Research Grant “Examining a collaborative strategy for increasing understanding, adoption, adaptation and/or creation of evidence-based children’s mental health practices for culturally diverse communities”. Co-Principal Investigator with Center for Excellence in Children’s Mental Health, University of Minnesota
  • University of Minnesota Institute for Diversity, Equity and Advocacy (IDEA) Multicultural Research Award
  • Ministry of Education Singapore Academic Research Fund. “A Multinational Study of Characteristics of Expert Counselors in Singapore, South Korea, Japan, and Thailand: The Singapore Study.”
  • Grant-in-Aid of Research, Artistry and Scholarship: “Cultural intelligence: Construct validation of a new measure of cultural competence.”
  • President’s Faculty Multicultural Research Award: “In search of cultural competence in mental health: A study of expert multicultural counselors.”
  • Grant-in-Aid of Research, Artistry and Scholarship: “A meta-analysis of attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help.”
  • President’s Faculty Multicultural Research Award: “Linguistic access to mental health: The use of interpreters in mental health counseling.”
  • College of Education and Human Development Marcia Edwards Fund: “A cross-cultural study to explore the determination and nomination process of master therapists.

Goh, M. (2023). Negotiating intercultural competence across disciplines: From multicultural to intercultural education. In A. D’Angelo, M. K. O’Brien. & G. Marty (Editors). Mestenhauser and the Possibilities of International Education: Illuminating Pathways for Inquiry and Future Practice (pp. 127-138). London, UK: Routledge; Internationalization in Higher Education series.

Goh, M. & Deutschman, M. (2020). Global Citizenship Education in East, South, and Southeast Asia. In D. Shugurensky & C. C. Wolhuter (Vol. Eds.) Global Citizenship Education and Teacher Education: Theoretical and Practical Issues (pp. 161-178). New York: Routledge.

Wang, K. T., & Goh, M. (2020). Cultural intelligence. In B. J. Carducci (Editor-in-Chief) & J. S. Mio & R. E. Riggio (Vol. Eds.), The Wiley-Blackwell encyclopedia of personality and individual differences: Vol. IV. Clinical, applied, and cross-cultural research (pp. 269-273). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

M. J. La Roche, Hess, D., Yang, P., & Goh, M. (2020). Outlining a global and cultural model of assessment. In M. J. La Roche (Ed.) Towards a Global and Cultural Psychotherapy: Theoretical Foundations and Clinical Implications (pp. 87-118). San Diego, CA: Cognella.

Albert, K. A., Goh, M., & Singh, V. (2018). Carpe diem in two acts: How an equity and diversity framework anchors and activates equity and diversity work in higher education. In S. Thompson (Ed.) Campus Diversity Triumphs: Valleys of Hope. Diversity in Higher Education Volume 20 (pp. 193-210). Bingley, United Kingdom: Emerald Publishing.

Gross, L. S., & Goh, M. (2017). Mindful reflection in intercultural learning. In. B. Kappler Mikk & I. E. Steglitz (Eds.) Learning across cultures: Globally and locally (pp. 167-190). Washington, DC: NAFSA/Stylus.

Hirai, T., & Goh, M. (2016). Personal and professional characteristics of master therapists: A qualitative investigation on expertise in psychotherapy and counseling in Japan. In L. Jennings & T. M. Skovholt (Eds.), Expertise in counseling and psychotherapy: Master therapist studies from around the world (pp. 155-194). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Jennings, L., D’Rozario, V., Goh, M., Sovereign, A., Brogger, M., & Skovholt, T. M. (2016). Psychotherapy expertise in Singapore: A qualitative investigation. In L. Jennings & T. M. Skovholt (Eds.), Expertise in counseling and psychotherapy: Master therapist studies from around the world (pp. 127-153). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Jennings, L., Skovholt, T. M., Hessel, H., Lakhan, S., & Goh, M. (2016). The world of expertise in counseling and psychotherapy. In L. Jennings & T. M. Skovholt (Eds.), Expertise in counseling and psychotherapy: Master therapist studies from around the world (pp. 1-17). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Goh, M. (2015). Counseling. In J. M. Bennett (Ed.), The SAGE encyclopedia of intercultural competence. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Goh, M., Yon, K., Shimmi, Y., & Hirai, T. (2014). Experiences of Asian psychologists and counselors trained in the USA: An exploratory study. Asia Pacific Education Review, 15(4), 593-608.

Yon, K., Choi, W., & Goh, M. (2013). Career maturity growth curve and sex-role stereotypes of Korean adolescents. Journal of Career Development, 40(3), 203-222.doi: 10.1177/0894845312445515

Jennings, L., Skovholt, T. M., Goh, M., & Lian, F. (2013). Master therapists: Explorations of expertise. In M. H. Rønnestad & T. M. Skovholt (Eds.), The developing practitioner: Growth and stagnation of therapists and counselors. New York, NY: Routledge.

Goh, M. (2012). Teaching with Cultural Intelligence: Developing multiculturally educated and globally engaged citizens. Asia Pacific Journal of Education, 32(4), 395-415.

Goh, M., Skovholt, T. M., Yang, A., & Starkey, M. (2012). Developing habits of culturally competent practice. In T. M. Skovholt (Ed.), Becoming a therapist: On the path to mastery (pp.79-100). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley and Sons.

Goh, M., Starkey, M., Koch, J. (2011). Cultural formulation exercise: Making culturally appropriate formulations in the treatment of culturally diverse individuals. In M. Pope, J. S. Pangelinan, & A. D. Coker (Eds.), Experiential activities for teaching multicultural counseling classes and infusing cultural diversity into core classes (pp. 225-227). Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association.

Goh, M., Koch, J., & Sanger, S. (2008). Cultural intelligence in counseling psychology: Applications for multicultural counseling competence. In S. Ang & L. Van Dyne (Eds.), Handbook of cultural intelligence (pp. 257-270). Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe.

Yoon, E., Lee, R., & Goh, M. (2008). Acculturation, social connectedness, and subjective well-being. Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 14, 246-255.

Goh, M., Xie, B., Herting Wahl, K., Zhong, G., Lian, F., & Romano, J. L., (2007). Chinese attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help. International Journal for the Advancement of Counseling, 29, 187-202.

Goh, M., Wahl, K. H., Koch McDonald, J., Alliman-Brisett, A., & Yoon, E. (2007). Working with immigrant students in schools: The role of school counselors in building cross-cultural bridges. Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, 35, 66-79.

Goh, M. (2005). Cultural competence and master therapists: An inextricable relationship. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 27, 71-81.

Goh, M., Dunnigan, T., & McGraw Schuchman, K. (2004). Bias in counseling Hmong clients with limited English proficiency. In J. L. Chin (Ed.), The psychology of prejudice and discrimination volume 2: Ethnicity and multiracial identity (pp. 109-136). Westport, CT: Praeger.

Tan, A. G., & Goh, M. (Eds.). (2002). Psychology in Singapore: Issues of an emerging discipline. Singapore: McGraw-Hill.