This thesis examines the relationship among previous exposure to war and conflict, acculturation, and identity formation among adolescent refugees. It was hypothesized that US acculturation would mediate the association between exposure to war and conflict and identity development among adolescent refugees. Participants included 33 adolescent refugees (16 males and 17 females) ranging in age between 11 and 17 years (M = 14.61, SD = 1.48), who were recruited through a refugee resettlement service provider located in Orlando, Florida. Country of origin included Cuba (n = 25), Iraq (n = 4), Jordan (n =1), Haiti (n =1), Colombia (n =1), and Venezuela (n =1). Previous exposure to war and conflict was found to impact identity development; however, the proposed hypothesis in which US acculturation mediates the association between exposure to war and conflict on the one hand, and identity development on the other was not supported. Results indicated that US acculturation was not related to any of the study variables. Previous exposure to war and conflict, along with hardships caused by such experiences, were negatively correlated with identity development and positively correlated with identity distress. In addition, native acculturation was negatively correlated with identity distress, suggesting that acculturation to one's native culture may serve as a protective factor against identity distress among adolescent refugees. Implications for professional practice are discussed.
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Berman, Steven L.
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Sciences
Dissertations, Academic -- Sciences; Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic
UCF Daytona Beach
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Guler, Jessica, "The Relationship Among Previous Exposure to War and Conflict, Acculturation, and Identity Formation Among Adolescent Refugees" (2014). HIM 1990-2015. 1573.