Relationships Among Identity, Perceived Discrimination, and Depressive Symptoms in Eight Ethnic-Generational Groups
Objective: Examine whether personal identity confusion and ethnic identity, respectively, moderate and/or mediate the relationship between perceived discrimination (PD) and depressive symptoms (DS) in eight ethnic-generational groups.
Method: The sample consisted of 9665 students (73% women; mean age 20.31) from 30 colleges and universities from around the United States. Cross-sectional data were gathered through a confidential online survey.
Results: Across groups, PD and ethnic identity levels varied, while identity confusion levels were mostly similar. Neither identity confusion nor ethnic identity moderated the PD-DS relationship for any groups. However, identity confusion was a partial mediator for immigrant and nonimmigrant Hispanic/Latino(a) and White/European American participants. Identity confusion also suppressed the PD-DS relationship for Black/African American participants.
Conclusions: Results highlight the need for additional research on identity confusion's role in the PD-distress link and the importance of addressing ethnicity and generation status when examining the effects of PD on college students’ mental health.
Donovan, R. A., Huynh, Q., Park, I. J. K., Kim, S. Y., Lee, R. M., & Robertson, E. (2013). Relationships among identity, perceived discrimination, and depressive symptoms in eight ethnic-generational groups. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 69(4), 397-414. doi: 10.1002/jclp.21936