Date of Award:

12-2008

Document Type:

Dissertation

Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department:

Psychology

Advisor/Chair:

Renee V. Galliher

Abstract

This study examined the relationships among ethnic identity, cultural identity, experiences of discrimination, their interactions, and their effects on various psychosocial outcomes (self-esteem, depression, sense of school membership, social functioning, substance abuse, substance related problems, delinquent behaviors, and grade point average [GPA]). Data were collected twice over a 2-year period. Change across time was observed in male adolescents' experiences of discrimination. Affirmation and belonging to Navajo culture was the strongest protective predictor at Time 1, but at Time 2 less consistent patterns of association emerged. Also at Time 2, experiences of discrimination emerged as a powerful negative predictor of psychosocial functioning for boys only. Finally, there were very few longitudinal links between ethnic identity, discrimination experiences, and psychosocial functioning, suggesting that more complex and sophisticated analyses and designs may be necessary to more clearly delineate the longitudinal implications of ethnic identity development.

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