Ethnic identity, acculturation, perceived discrimination, and college adjustment in Mexican Americans



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Texas Tech University


Adjusting to coUege can be a difficult task for many college students. Variables that have been examined for their relationship to college adjustment include locus of control, social support, past academic achievement, goal stability, optimism, and self-esteem. For Mexican American college students, there may be unique problems that must be addressed in adjusting to college. In addition to the variables that have been examined among the general college populat�on, research has specifically investigated college adjustment among Mexican American students. This research has included variables such as ethnic identity and acculturation and has yielded inconsistent findings. Studies have found that the availability of family support is positively associated with college adjustment among Mexican American students. This dissertation extended the existing literature by examining perceived discrimination in addit�on to ethnic ident�ty, acculturation, and family support and the relationships among these variables among a sample of Mexican American students. Also, the manner in which individuals deal with discrimination along different levels of ethnic identity and acculturation was assessed. CoUege self-efficacy, which has been examined by only a limited number of studies, was also addressed. The results indicated that higher levels of acculturation, socioeconomic status, and family support and being male were associated with lower levels of anxiety and depressive symptoms, and higher levels of mental health, academic adjustment, social adjustment, course efflcacy, social eff�cacy, personal-emotional adjustment, and institutional attachment. Having lower levels of acculturation and higher levels of generat�on status were associated with increased levels of perceived discrimination. When coping with discrimination, higher levels of ethnic identity were associated with increased usage of reflective coping style.



Mexican Americans -- Ethnic identity, Discrimination against Mexican Americans, Mexican American college students