Psychology, Department of


Date of this Version



Published in Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 13:4 (2007), pp. 347–355. Copyright © 2007 American Psychological Association. Used by permission. “This article may not exactly replicate the final version published in the APA journal. It is not the copy of record.”


This study examined the relations between acculturative stress and psychological functioning, as well as the protective role of social support and coping style, in a sample of 148 Mexican American college students (67% female, 33% male; mean age = 23.05 years, SD = 3.33). In bivariate analyses, acculturative stress was associated with higher levels of anxiety and depressive symptoms. Moreover, active coping was associated with better adjustment (lower depression), whereas avoidant coping predicted poorer adjustment (higher levels of depression and anxiety). Tests of interaction effects indicated that parental support and active coping buffered the effects of high acculturative stress on anxiety symptoms and depressive symptoms. In addition, peer support moderated the relation between acculturative stress and anxiety symptoms. Implications for reducing the effects of acculturative stress among Mexican American college students are discussed.