Thesis

The effects of acculturation and religion on Portuguese-Americans' attitudes towards seeking professional mental health care

The current study investigated the Portuguese-Americans’ attitudes towards seeking professional psychological help (i.e., therapy) by evaluating their acculturation and religiosity level. Twenty-two male and 49 female first-generation (being born outside of the United States) or second-generation (being born in the United States) Portuguese-Americans participated in this study. Online surveys were completed by CSU, Stanislaus students and they received experimental credit for their participation. Participants who completed the surveys in person were community members recruited from a local Portuguese bakery or a Portuguese Catholic Church and they received a $5 gift card for their participation. Both online and in-person participants completed three surveys: Attitudes Towards Seeking Professional Psychological Help Short-Survey (ATSPPH-S) measured attitudes towards help-seeking, the Short Acculturation Scale for Hispanics (SASH) measured the acculturation level of the Portuguese-American population, and the Santa Clara Strength of Religious Faith (SCSORF) survey was used to measure the level of religiosity. It was hypothesized that Portuguese-Americans who reported higher levels of religiosity would have less favorable attitudes towards seeking therapy from a mental health professional as compared to those who were not as religious. It was also hypothesized that the generation level (first or second) would influence their attitudes towards seeking professional psychological help as it was associated with their level of acculturation. The researcher hypothesized that less acculturated (first-generation) Portuguese-Americans would have more negative attitudes towards seeking professional help compared to their (second-generation) who are more acculturated to the American culture. Analyses revealed that religiosity did not significantly impact attitudes towards seeking help. Results also revealed that second-generation Portuguese-Americans were more acculturated than first-generation Portuguese-Americans. Additionally, second-generation Portuguese-Americans had more favorable attitudes towards seeking professional psychological help compared to first-generation Portuguese-American.female first-generation (being born outside of the United States) or second-generation (being born in the United States) Portuguese-Americans participated in this study. Online surveys were completed by CSU, Stanislaus students and they received experimental credit for their participation. Participants who completed the surveys in person were community members recruited from a local Portuguese bakery or a Portuguese Catholic Church and they received a $5 gift card for their participation. Both online and in-person participants completed three surveys: Attitudes Towards Seeking Professional Psychological Help Short-Survey (ATSPPH-S) measured attitudes towards help-seeking, the Short Acculturation Scale for Hispanics (SASH) measured the acculturation level of the Portuguese-American population, and the Santa Clara Strength of Religious Faith (SCSORF) survey was used to measure the level of religiosity. It was hypothesized that Portuguese-Americans who reported higher levels of religiosity would have less favorable attitudes towards seeking therapy from a mental health professional as compared to those who were not as religious. It was also hypothesized that the generation level (first or second) would influence their attitudes towards seeking professional psychological help as it was associated with their level of acculturation. The researcher hypothesized that less acculturated (first-generation) Portuguese-Americans would have more negative attitudes towards seeking professional help compared to their (second-generation) who are more acculturated to the American culture. Analyses revealed that religiosity did not significantly impact attitudes towards seeking help. Results also revealed that second-generation Portuguese-Americans were more acculturated than first-generation Portuguese-Americans. Additionally, second-generation Portuguese-Americans had more favorable attitudes towards seeking professional psychological help compared to first-generation Portuguese-American.

Relationships

Items