Masters Thesis

Acculturative Stress, Intergenerational Conflict, and Negative Mood Regulation Expectancies of Korean Immigrants

I examined acculturative stress among Korean immigrants living in the U.S. Acculturative stress is a stress individuals experience as they adjust to a new culture. Acculturative stress damages mental health. I investigated how acculturative stress, conflicts between parents and children, depressive symptoms, and the belief individuals have that they can alleviate their negative emotional states are associated with each other. The participants were 103 immigrants of Korean descent who completed questionnaires. The participants had options to respond to the survey in English or Korean, in person or online. A MANOVA revealed that there was no significant difference in scores between languages. Correlational analyses showed that acculturative stress was significantly positively correlated with intergenerational conflict related to education and career, intergenerational conflict related to dating and marriage, and depressive symptoms. Acculturative stress was also significantly negatively correlated with negative mood regulation expectancies (NMRE). Multivariate analyses showed that years of residence in U.S., intergenerational conflict related to education and career, and NMRE all significantly predicted acculturative stress. Furthermore, NMRE and acculturative stress significantly predicted depressive symptoms. Tests of NMRE as a moderator were not significant. Korean immigrants in this study were experiencing acculturative stress and depressive symptoms. Clinical interventions targeting raising NMRE may build Korean immigrants’ resilience to acculturative stress.

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