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The role of racial identity, ethnic identity, and Asian values as mediators of perceived discrimination and psychological well-being among Asian American college students

Derek Kenji Iwamoto, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

The current study examined how multiple cultural mechanism—racial identity (Helms, 2005), ethnic identity (Lee & Yoo, 2004; Phinney, 1992), and Asian values (Kim and Hong, 2004) mediate the relationship between perceived discrimination (Liang et al., 2004) and psychological well being (Ryff, 1989) among 402 Asian American college students. Participants filled out an online survey, and of these participants, 68% were second generation, 25% were first generation, and 7% were other either 3rd generation or higher. Prior to the primary analysis, exploratory factor analysis was conducted on the People of Color Racial Identity measure (PRIAS; Helms, 2005). This analysis identified five factors: Conformity, Dissonance, Resistance, Immersion, and Internalization, which was in contrast to four factors proposed by Helms (2005). The reliability estimates for each subscale were higher compared to previous studies on the PRIAS among Asian American college students (Alvarez & Helms, 2001; Kohatsu et al., 2000). Multiple regression results revealed no significant relationships between perceived discrimination and well being thus mediation analysis was not performed. Moreover, inspections of the VIF and Tolerance index indicated that there were no problems with multicollinearity among the racial identity subscales and ethnic identity. This finding supports the theories that racial identity and ethnic identity are conceptually different. The second multiple regression analysis revealed that the racial identity statuses, Dissonance, Immersion, Internalization, and Ethnic Identity-Affective Pride were all robust predictors of psychological well being. While the demographic variables (i.e., collection method, gender and community makeup), perceived discrimination, and Asian values were not significant. These findings elucidate the importance of: (1) differentiating the concepts of racial and ethnic identity; and (2) racial identity and ethnic identity each uniquely explain the variance in psychological well being among a sample of Asian American college students. ^

Subject Area

Education, Bilingual and Multicultural|Psychology, Clinical|Sociology, Ethnic and Racial Studies

Recommended Citation

Iwamoto, Derek Kenji, "The role of racial identity, ethnic identity, and Asian values as mediators of perceived discrimination and psychological well-being among Asian American college students" (2007). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3283927.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3283927

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