A PSYCHOSOCIOCULTURAL INVESTIGATION OF PSYCHOLOGICAL WELL-BEING AMONG CHICANA/O UNDERGRADUATES
Hernandez, Humberto Ricardo
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The Latina/o population makes up the largest ethnic minority group in the United States. Unfortunately, the Latina/o population also experiences higher rates of poverty in comparison to other ethnic groups (U.S. Census Bureau, 2006). Educational attainment is one of the key factors in elevating one's socioeconomic standing, yet Latina/o undergraduates continue to be underrepresented in higher education (NCES, 2002). Previous frameworks have been unable to establish an interdisciplinary approach that accounts for the cultural phenomena, which makes the experiences of Latina/os unique. The present study reviewed the psychological well-being of Latina/o undergraduates from a psychosociocultural (PSC) framework in order to glean a more comprehensive understanding of the factors that contribute to adjustment. A review of the literature of previous findings and issues associated with mismeasurement are provided. Specifically, psychological (college self-efficacy) and sociocultural constructs (cultural congruity, attitudinal familismo, acculturation/enculturation) will be reviewed to understand the interactions and impact of these variables on level of psychological well-being. A mediation model predicting the psychological well-being of 138 Chicana/o undergraduates was tested, however mediation was not supported. The present study found that increased college self-viefficacy predicted increased psychological well-being. Further, increased Anglo orientation was associated with increased cultural congruity, more positive perceptions of the university environment, and increased college self-efficacy. Increased attitudinal familism was associated with increased college self-efficacy. Lastly, cultural congruity, perceptions of the university environment, college self-efficacy, and attitudinal familism were all positively associated with psychological well-being. Limitations and future directions are discussed.