The effect of acculturation on depressive moods: Immigrant boys and girls during their transition from late adolescence to early adulthood

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Abstract

Using data (N=773) from a longitudinal study of former Soviet Union immigrants to Israel, this study aimed to identify the psychosocial correlates of depressive mood among immigrant adolescents and differences by age and gender. OLS regression results suggest acculturative and social factors as useful variables in predicting depression. Adolescents with a high probability of assimilating (simultaneous strengthening of Israeli identity and weakening of Russian identity) proved more likely to report low levels of depression. Consistent with the literature, girls were more depressed than boys and age was positively related to depressive moods. As expected, different factors explain the psychological well-being of adolescents of different age groups and sex: in boys, depression was found mainly related to acculturation difficulties; in girls it was related more to their social support. As for age, more independent variables were statistically significant in accounting for depression in the older than in the younger group, which suggests that depression is age-related. The study results should be understood in connection with socialization processes to sex roles and the impact immigration has on this process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-44
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Psychology
Volume43
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2008

Keywords

  • Acculturation
  • Adjustment
  • Adolescents
  • Well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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