Author ORCID Identifier


Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

Rosalie Corona, PhD

Second Advisor

Terri Sullivan, PhD

Third Advisor

Heather Jones, PhD

Fourth Advisor

Miriam Kuttikat, PhD

Fifth Advisor

Fantasy Lozada, PhD


This study explored relations among acculturative stress (i.e., perceived discrimination, parent-child communication difficulties, incongruent parent-child values, and a general measure of acculturative stress), depressive symptoms, anxiety symptoms, family conflict, ethnic identity, and social support in a sample of 207 Asian American emerging adults (ages 18-25). Regressions showed that acculturative stress was positively associated with depressive symptoms and anxiety symptoms. Likewise, acculturative stress was positively related to family conflict, regardless of how the former was operationalized. Greater family conflict was also associated with greater depressive symptoms and anxiety symptoms.

Mediation models found that, for each predictor of acculturative stress, family conflict significantly mediated the path to both depressive symptoms and anxiety symptoms. Thus, these were expanded into a series of moderated mediation models to determine whether these relations varied as a function of ethnic identity and social support. Ethnic identity affirmation moderated the relation between general acculturative stress and depressive symptoms, between general acculturative stress and anxiety symptoms, and between perceived discrimination and anxiety symptoms. Specifically, family conflict mediated these associations when participants reported moderate or high ethnic identity affirmation but not when they reported low levels.

Limitations included: cross-sectional design, lack of parent-report on family conflict, use of an aggregated measure of social support, and generalizability concerns in terms of setting, nativity status, English fluency, and ethnic group. Nonetheless, results indicate that family dynamics are important when considering the impact of acculturative stress on mental health. Ethnic identity affirmation also moderated this relation. These findings have implications for intervention.


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Available for download on Sunday, December 08, 2024