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1 PERCEIVED JUSTICE, ETHNIC IDENTITY, AND INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS SOCIOCULTURAL ADAPTATION By TONG-AN SHUEH A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR IDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SCIENCE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2007
2 2007 Tong-An Shueh
3 To all who nurtured my intellectual curiosity, academic interests, and sense of scholarship throughout my lifetime, maki ng this milestone possible
4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I thank the chair and members of my superv isory committee for their mentoring, the staff and members at the UF Libraries for their keen research assistance, the participants in my surveys for their honest and open participa tions, and Miles Condon and Sarah Gholam for assisting me collecting and organizing the data. I thank my parents and my sister for their loving encouragement, which motivated me to complete my study.
5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...............................................................................................................4 LIST OF TABLES................................................................................................................. ..........7 LIST OF FIGURES................................................................................................................ .........8 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS..........................................................................................................9 ABSTRACT....................................................................................................................... ............10 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION..................................................................................................................11 Sociocultural Adaptation....................................................................................................... .12 Distinction between Sociocultural Adap tation and Psychological Adjustment..............12 Relationship between Sociocultural Ad aptation and Psychological Adjustment............12 Sojourners Sociocultural Adaptation.............................................................................13 Length in host culture...............................................................................................14 Host national language fluency................................................................................14 Interaction with host nationals.................................................................................15 Perceived Justice.............................................................................................................. .......16 Social Justice Research in Psychology............................................................................16 Types of Justice...............................................................................................................16 Definition and Conceptualizati on of Procedural Justice.................................................16 Measurement of Procedural Justice.................................................................................17 Perceived Justice and Adjustment among Sojourners.....................................................18 Perceived Discrimination and Ad justment among Immigrants.......................................18 Perceived Justice and Student Adjust ment in the University Setting..............................19 Ethnic Identity................................................................................................................ ........20 Definition of Ethnic Identity...........................................................................................20 Ethnic Identity and Psychological Well-being................................................................21 Ethnic Identity and Soci ocultural Adaptation.................................................................22 Rejection-identification model........................................................................................22 International Students Ethnic Identity............................................................................23 Theoretical Models for Perceived Justice, Et hnic Identity, and Sociocultural Adaptation....24 The Buffering Model of Social Support..........................................................................24 The Match Hypothesis.....................................................................................................24 Rationale...................................................................................................................... ...........25 2 METHODS........................................................................................................................ .....28 Participants................................................................................................................... ..........28 Measures....................................................................................................................... ..........29
6 Demographic Questionnaire............................................................................................29 Perceived Justice Inventory.............................................................................................29 Multigroup Ethnic Identity Measure...............................................................................30 Sociocultural Adaptation Scale.......................................................................................31 Quality Testing Items......................................................................................................32 Procedure...................................................................................................................... ..........32 3 RESULTS........................................................................................................................ .......33 Preliminary Analyses........................................................................................................... ...33 Inclusion of Participants Based on the Quality Testing Items........................................33 Similarity of Data fr om Different Sources......................................................................33 Normality Assumption....................................................................................................34 Factor Analysis of Percei ved Procedural Justice.............................................................35 Reliability of Variables in the Analyses..........................................................................36 Analyses....................................................................................................................... ...........36 Perceived Procedural Justice and Sociocultural Adaptation...........................................36 Ethnic Identity and Soci ocultural Adaptation.................................................................37 Moderation Effect of Et hnic Identity Factors..................................................................38 Plotting the moderation effect..................................................................................39 Significance of the simple regression slopes............................................................40 Exploratory Analyses........................................................................................................... ...41 4 DISCUSSION..................................................................................................................... ....45 5 LIMITATIONS AND FUTURE RESEARCH DIRECTIONS..............................................50 APPENDIX A DEMOGRAPHIC QUESTIONNAIRE..................................................................................52 B PERCEIVED JUSTICE INVENTORY (PJ I)UNIVERSITY REPRESENTATIVE.........55 C THE MULTIGROUP ETHNIC IDENTITY MEASURE (MEIM).......................................60 D SCOCIOCULTURAL ADAPTATION SCALE (SCAS)......................................................61 E INSTITUTION REVIEW BOARD DOCUMENTS..............................................................63 LIST OF REFERENCES............................................................................................................. ..75 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.........................................................................................................81
7 LIST OF TABLES Table page 3-1 Mean and standard deviation from online survey or paper form survey...........................42 3-2 Skewness and kurtosis of the variables in the analyses.....................................................42 3-3 Mean, 5% trimmed mean, and standard devi ation of the variable s in the analyses..........42 3-4 Exploratory factor analys is of the Perceived Proce dural Justice (PPJ) items....................43 3-5 Simple slope regression anal yses of procedural justice (tPPJ) predicting sociocultural adaptation (SCAS) at low, medium, and hi gh ethnic identity involvement (EIS).............44
8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 3-1 Moderation effect of ethnic identity i nvolvement (EIS) for the relationship between procedural justice (tPPJ) and so ciocultural adaptation (SCAS)........................................44
9 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS ABC Affirmation, Belonging, and Comm itment. Subscale of the MEIM EIS Ethnic Identity Search. Subscale of the MEIM HCJI The HeathCare Justice Inventory HCJI-HP The HealthCare Justice Inve ntory the Health Plan Version HCJI-P The HealthCare Justice Inventory the Provider Version MEIM The Multigroup Ethnic Identity Measure PJI The Perceived Justice Inventory, the instrument which I adapted directly from the HCJI to measure international students perceived justice to the university services PPJ Perceived Procedural Justice. Subs cale of the Perceived Justice Inventory SCAS The Sociocultural Adaptation Scale tABC The transformed ABC variable tPPJ The transformed PPJ variable
10 Abstract of Thesis Presen ted to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science PERCEIVED JUSTICE, ETHNIC IDENTITY, AND INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS SOCIOCULTURAL ADAPTATION By Tong-An Shueh August 2007 Chair: Kenneth G. Rice Cochair: Mark R. Fondacaro Major: Psychology My study focused on factors associated with international stud ents sociocultural adaptation in the United States. I examined international students sociocultural adaptation from a social justice perspective and from a cultural perspective. The results showed that perceived procedural justice was significantly related to international students sociocultural adaptation. However, involvement in ethnic identity sear ch activities moderated this relationship. Specifically, international students with hi gh ethnic identity involvement showed less sociocultural adaptation difficulty when their pe rceived procedural just ice was low; however, their sociocultural adaptation was stabilized wh en perceived procedural justice was high. The results implied that perceived justice is worth further attention in studies of international students sociocultural adaptati on, and that cultural va riables may serve as moderators of the justice-adaptation effect, even t hough they might not have direct associations with international students sociocultural adaptation. Limitations and future research di rections were also addressed.
11 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION According to Open Doors annual report (Inst itute of International Education, 2005), there were 565,039 international students enrolled in Un ited States (U.S.) colle ges and universities in 2005. From a social justice perspective, interna tional students should be recognized as members of U.S. society because they not only cont ribute to U.S. scientific and technological competitiveness but also bring in about 13.3 bill ion dollars to the U.S. economy each year (Institute of International Edu cation, 2005). Unfortunately, the expe rience of many international students in the U.S. has been far from welcoming. In addition to adjustment difficulties they face from moving to a new environment, many inte rnational students ar e also vulnerable to discrimination and racism similar to that experi enced by U.S. racial/ethnic minorities. However, much less attention has been fo cused on international students in social justice research compared to other populations such as immigrants and racial/ethnic minorities. More specifically, international students ethni c identity and sociocul tural adaptation have received minimal research attention in th e field of psychology. Mullins, Quintrell, and Hancocks (1995) research shows that internatio nal students experienced discrimination both onand off-campus. Previous research also shows that international students are more reluctant to seek counseling services on campus (Bradley, Parr, Lan, Bingi, & Gould, 1995) and they also have higher discontinuation rates (Pedersen, 1991). Even though they have adjustment difficulties, international students usually do not resort to the counseling services on campus. This phenomenon could result from international students thinking the uni versity services would not be helpful; therefore, they may resort to their existing resources such as their own ethnic groups for problem-solving assistance. In my study, I focused on anal yzing international students sociocultural adaptation with specific attentions to their ethnic identity and their
12 perceived justice based on experiences with uni versity services. In the following paragraphs, literature relevant to the unders tanding of international stude nts sociocultural adaptation, perceived justice, and ethnic identity will be reviewed. Sociocultural Adaptation Distinction between Sociocultural Adap tation and Psychological Adjustment A similar term to sociocultural adaptation, soc ial adaptation, is ofte n used vaguely in the health care and medical literature as well as the education literature. Paris and White-Williams (2005) provided a general definition for social adaptation as ones ability to function as a member of society. In cross-cultural resear ch, Ward and Kennedy ( 1999) argued that cross cultural adaptation could be divided into two di stinct constructs: psyc hological adjustment and sociocultural adaptation. Psyc hological adjustment refers to psychological well-being or satisfaction whereas sociocultural adaptation refers to the ability to fit in within a particular society. Ward (1996) suggested that sociocultura l adaptation could be examined in terms of social skills and cultural lear ning while psychological adjust ment could be best understood within the stress coping framework. Relationship between Sociocultural Adap tation and Psychological Adjustment Existing literature has shown that psychologi cal adjustment is highly correlated with sociocultural adaptation among sojourners, peop le temporarily residing abroad, often for academic purposes (Ward & Kennedy, 1999). Zheng and Berry (1991) found that sociocultural adaptation problems relating to personal relati onships, food, and recreatio n in the new cultural environment predicted psychological and psyc hosomatic symptoms. A study investigating Chinese international students adjustment in a British university also revealed that psychological stress was significantly correlated with sociocultural adaptation difficulties, especially in the area of daily life functioning. Specifically, the greater stress th ey experienced,
13 the lower GPA they received at the end of the classes (Spenc er-Oatey & Xiong, 2006). Psychological adjustment variables were also f ound to be highly associated with the social adaptation among the Portuguese immigrant adol escents in France (Neto, 2002). Since previous research has shown that sojourners sociocultu ral adaptation highly pred icts their psychological adjustment, understanding internat ional students sociocultural ad aptation could very possibly provide insights on helping them become more psychologically adjusted. While most previous research has put more focus on psychologi cal adjustment, my study focuses on their sociocultural adaptation. Sojourners Sociocultural Adaptation While the focus of my study is on internationa l students who are present sojourners in the U.S., these students may become first-generation immigrants in the future. Thus, the relevant sociocultural adaptation literatur e on immigrants is also examined here although Sussman (2002) pointed out that sojourners and immigrants may have different cultural adjustment experiences because of their different motivations and expecta tions of staying in the host country. Ward and Kennedy (1999) found that sojourners experienced more sociocultural adaptation difficulty than sedentary groups in the host country. They conc luded from previous research that factors involved in sojourners sociocu ltural adaptation include length of time in the new culture, cultural knowledge, amount of interaction a nd identification with host nationals, cultural distance, language fluency, and acculturation. We can easily see that these factors are either parts of or are very close to the construct of accultura tion which has extensive literature that is beyond the scope of my study. The over emphasis on accultu ration factors also revealed the lack of studies about ethnic identitys relationship to sojourners sociocultural adaptation, which will be further explored in the literature review of et hnic identity. Below, I focus on discussing the factors that are more relevant to the anal yses of sojourners sociocultural adaptation.
14 Length in host culture Ward and Kennedy (1996a; 1996b) point out th at sojourners sociocultural adaptation seems to follow a learning curve with rapid im provement during the first few months of the cross-cultural transition and a gra dual leveling-off of learned social and cultural skills later. This phenomenon is intriguing because it seems to suggest that the sojourners sociocultural adaptation could be set in the very beginning wh en they first arrive at the host country. And, international students first experiences with the host country usually started from the university. Therefore, how they were treated initially by th e university representati ves might decide their first experience and this could be crucia l for their later soci ocultural adaptation. Host national language fluency Although language difficulty is common for intern ational students, previous research did not generate a consensus of its relationship with sojourners socioc ultural adaptation. Senel (2003) found that psychosocial adaptation was predicted by better Engl ish proficiency. Ward, Bochner, and Furnham (2001) reviewed previous research on sojourners and found that fluency in the host language is associated with better sociocultural and psychol ogical adjustment, but Ward and Kennedys study (1993a) also showed th at language fluency is not always linked to psychological adjustment. Netos (2002) study about Portuguese immigrant adolescents in France also showed that language fluency in the host country was the most signif icant predictor of social adaptation. Neto argued th at this result was consistent with previous studies that fluency in the host culture language is positively correlat ed with sociocultural adaptation. Particularly, those fluent in host culture language experien ce fewer social difficulties (Sano, 1990; Ward & Kennedy, 1994) and had increased interaction wi th the host nationals (Ward, Chang, & LopezNerney,,1999). However, Aronowitzs (1984) review of previous research showed that local
15 language fluency and usage did not significantly predict immigrant childrens social adaptation. This seems to suggest language fluency may not obviously lead to sociocultural adaptation. Interaction with host nationals. Ward and Kennedy (1993b) found that interna tional students who ha d more interaction with host nationals had fewer social difficultie s, more improved communicative abilities, and better general adaptation to life overseas. Having more local friends has also been found to be associated with lower stress level (Redmond & Bunyi, 1993). However, Wa rd and her colleagues found that both the New Zealand expatriates an d Malaysian students w ho reported having more contact with Singaporeans experienced more acculturative stress (Ward & Kennedy, 1992, 1993b). Ward and Rana-Deuba (2000) suggested that the incongruent findings might result from the quality rather than the quantity of sojourners interaction with host nationals. In other words, if the interaction experi ences are not pleasant or helpful, it may not increase sojourners sociocultural adaptation. This highlights the im portance of internati onal students perceived justice in their inter action experiences. In addition, Spencer-Oatey and Xiong (2006) found that Chinese international students rated social intera ctions as the most diffi cult on the sociocultural adaptation scale. Their follow-up interview reveal ed that some students complained about the lack of opportunities to interact with native students and the un iversity did not provide enough services or supports to assist their daily life adjustment. Th is finding revealed that the universitys services could play an important role in assistin g international students more socioculturally adapted.
16 Perceived Justice Social Justice Research in Psychology As Katz (2005) points out, previous justice research in psychology can be roughly divided into two domains: developmental psychology and social psychology. Ps ychologists using the developmental perspective analyze justice from an intra-personal perspective and link justice to cognitive perception or moral development, while social psychologists study justice by focusing on the social forces behind it. I adopt the pers pective of social psyc hology with systemic and contextual changes emphasized in my study. From this theoretical point of view, international students perceived justice serves more as an independent variable rather than a dependent variable. Types of Justice There are mainly two types of justice widely discussed in the social justice literature, namely, distributive justice and pr ocedural justice. Distributive ju stice is concerned with how the distribution of resources affect s an individuals psychological, social, and economic well-being (Deutsch, 1975, p. 137). While distri butive justice is concerned with the fairness of the outcome of the decision-making process, procedural justic e focuses more on the appraisals of how people are treated in the decision-making process (Fondacaro, Jackson, & Luescher, 2002; Lind & Tyler, 1988). Brockner and Wiesenfeld (1996) poin ted out that distributive justice would be deemed less important for people if procedural ju stice is high because, ideally, fair distribution will occur through fair procedure in the long r un (Chory-Assad & Paulsel, 2004). Therefore, my study will mainly focus on perc eived procedural justice. Definition and Conceptualization of Procedural Justice Procedural justice has received more atten tion in the psychology literature since the publication of the book Procedural Justice: A Psychological Analysis (Thibaut & Walker, 1975).
17 Tyler (1991) defined procedural justice as how people evaluate their experi ence with managerial authorities by considering the fairne ss of decision-making procedures. Rooted in social identity theory (Tajfel & Turner, 1986), the relational model of procedural justice suggests that people care about fair treatment because it describes the quality of their relationship with others in self-relevant groups. Measurement of Procedural Justice Tyler and Lind (1992) reviewed various measur es of procedural justice and found a wide variation in how procedural ju stice is operationalized and me asured in research studies. Fondacaro and his colleagues (2002; 2005) identi fied the need for reliable, valid, and comprehensive measures of procedural justice. They developed empirically based perceived justice measures which include procedural justice and distributive justice subscales for the family context (Fondacaro, Jackson, & Luescher, 2002) and for the healthcare context (Fondacaro, Frogner, & Moos, 2005). Based on Fondacaro and his colleagues extensive review of previous literature, they proposed ten di mensions, operationalized as f actors in the Family Justice Inventory (FJI; Fondacaro et al., 2002), in measur ing procedural justice: process control, voice, consistency, neutrality, accur acy, correction, dignity/respect, st anding/status recognition, trust, and global procedural fairness. In subsequent work on the Health Care Justice Inventory (HCJI; Fondacaro et al., 2005), they added three more dimensions: consent, decision control, and procedural satisfaction. Based on their factor analysis of the HCJI, the procedural justice items loaded on three factors: trust, impartiality, and participation (Fondacaro et al., 2005). After modification and adaptation, this measure may well be applied to contexts other than the family or healthcare context. In my study, the procedural justice subscale on the HCJI was modified to measure international students perceived procedural just ice in the university setting when they first
18 arrived in the U.S., which may include their vari ous experiences of intera cting with university administrations or university repres entatives in the international cen ter, their department, or their program. Perceived Justice and Adjustment among Sojourners There have been relatively fe w studies that examine sojourne rs perceived justice. For the most part, these studies adopted the term perceived discrimination, which frequently appears in studies on racial/ethnic minority and immigran t populations. In a study about international students and scholars in the U.K. and Germa ny (Krahe, Abraham, Felber, & Helbig, 2005), participants who were more identifiable as fo reigners by appearance re ported receiving more discrimination. Using perceived di scrimination as the dependent variable, this study also found that more positive contact with host nationals wa s associated with lower levels of perceived discrimination. Surprisingly, language proficienc y did not show an effect on the overall perceived discrimination. However, higher langu age proficiency was corr elated with greater perceived verbal discriminati on for sojourners in Germany. Several studies have used perceived discri mination among sojourners in predicting other psychological variables. In a study on internatio nal students in Norway, Sam (2001) found that perceived discrimination significantly predicted in ternational students li fe satisfaction; this finding was particularly signifi cant for students from Africa and Asia. However, host language proficiency and having a host na tional friend did not have a si gnificant effect on their life satisfaction. Leong and Wards (2000) study of Chinese sojourners in Singapore found that perceived discrimination was associated with increased identity conflict Perceived Discrimination and Ad justment among Immigrants More studies have examined the relations hip between perceived discrimination and sociocultural adaptation among immigrant popula tions. For example, Aycan and Berry (1996)
19 found a positive correlation between perceived discrimination and amount of social difficulties among Turkish immigrants in Canada. In a study on Cuban immigrant adolescents, Vega, Gil, Warheit, Zimmerman, and Apospori (1993) found an association between perceived discrimination and other sociocultural adaptation problems such as delinquency, drug use, and anti-social behaviors. Perceived Justice and Student Adjus tment in the University Setting There are some studies focusing on the univers ity setting and college classroom in the organizational justice literature. Colquitt (2001) found that students perceived justice was positively related to compliance with class rule s and satisfaction with grades. Chory-Assad (2002) showed that undergraduate college students perceived pr ocedural fairness positively predicted motivation and affectiv e learning in the course and negatively predicted aggression toward the instructor. Chory-Assad and Paulsel (2004) noted that only perceived procedural justice negatively predicted student aggression and hostility when they used hierarchical multiple regression analyses, even though perceived distributive and procedural justice were both negatively correlated with stude nt aggression and hostility. They also found that perceived procedural justice negatively predicted student s indirect aggression such as revenge and deception. More importantly, perceived procedural justice and perceived distributive justice did not seem to interact to predict student aggr ession, hostility, or resist ance. Chory-Assad and Paulsel (2004) concluded from th eir findings and previous research that distributive justice may not be as important as procedur al justice in the school setti ng (Tyler & Caine, 1981). Based on these study results, the main focus of perceive d justice in my study will rest on perceived procedural justice rather than perceived distribu tive justice.
20 Ethnic Identity Definition of Ethnic Identity From the preceding literature re view about sociocultural adaptation, I found that there is a lack of research on ethnic identity and its as sociation to sojourners adaptation. To further understand how ethnic identity play s a role in sojourners soci ocultural adaptation, I review literature relating to the constr uct of ethnic identity here. Acco rding to Helms (1999), ethnicity denotes the oldest ancestry one ca n recall about his/her national, re gional, or tribal origins and cultural traditions. The term ethnic identity has been defined and measured in various ways and usually without theoreti cal grounding (Phinney, 1990). My study adopts Phinneys (1990) definition and measuremen t of ethnic identity. Following the roots of social identity th eory (Tajfel & Turner, 1986), Phinney (1990) conceptualized ethnic identity as ones subjective sense of belonging to an ethnic group and the accompanying feelings and attitudes for this gr oup membership. Phinney (1992) termed this aspect of ethnic identity ethni c affirmation and belonging. Afte r reviewing previous research, Phinney (1990) also included ethn icity/ethnic self-identification as the key factor in defining ethnic identity. This aspect of ethnic identity directly links to measurement issues. Phinney pointed out that even ethnic self-identif ication may be oversimplified by the outsiders assumption of visibly distinct features in determ ining ethnic identity status. Researchers need to use open ended questions and multiple-choice items to assess ones ethnic self-identification because participants may not consider themselves members of the ethnic identity assigned or assumed by the researchers. Phinney conceptuali zation of ethnic identity also includes ethnic behaviors and practices, which refer to ones involvement in the social life and cultural practices of ones ethnic group (Phinney, 1990). Phinney listed some possible indicators of
21 ethnic behaviors and practices such as language, friendship, religious affiliation and practice, social organizations, cultural traditions, politic al ideology and activity, and area of residence. Phinney (1992) proposed that th e three factors of ethnic iden tity, namely, ethnicity/ethnic self-identification, et hnic affirmation and belonging, a nd ethnic behaviors and practices, directly translate to the three components in Phinneys Multigroup Ethnic Identity Measure (MEIM). In addition, Phinney ( 1989) proposed a three-stage mode l of ethnic identity that progresses from unexamined ethnic identity, to ethnic identity search, to achieved ethnic identity. Although this looks like a developmen tal process, Phinney (1990) warned that the meaning of ethnic identity achievement may vary across different individu als and ethnic groups. She suggested that achievement may not equate to a higher ethnic involvement. Likewise, some people may remain in or re turn to the first stage. Ethnic Identity and Psyc hological Well-being The relationships between ethnic identity and va rious mental health variables have been widely researched. I highlight some of the mo st recent and important studies for each related construct here. One important finding is the strong connection between self-esteem and ethnic identity. Phinney, Cantu, and Kurtz (1997) found a positive relationship between self-esteem and ethnic identity among African Amer ican, Latino, and Caucasian a dolescents in diverse ethnic contexts. In addition to self-esteem, Sam (2000) also found that high ethnic identity had strong predictive power for better mental health and life satisfaction among Norwegian adolescents. These results are consistent with other previous studies. Phinney s (1991) research showed that strong ethnic identity among immigrants was associated with positive self-esteem and psychological adjustment.
22 Ethnic Identity and Sociocultural Adaptation Sussman (2002) pointed out that identifications with the home culture and the host culture have been recognized as the key predictors to the different adju stment experiences in cultural adjustment studies. However, a study about Port uguese second generation immigrant adolescents in France showed that there was a negative main effect of ethnic identity in predicting social adaptation (Neto, 2002). The adolescents who labe led themselves as Portuguese experienced more social difficulties than those who identified themselves as French. In addition, a significant effect of migratory plans on social adaptati on was also found in this study. Specifically, those who were determined to stay in France experi enced better social ad aptation than those who planned to stay temporarily a nd those who were undecided on thei r plans. While this finding was interpreted by the author as a causal relationshi p, it was actually a corr elational survey study; therefore, ethnic identity might be the result rather than the cause in this relationship. The rejection-identification theory of ethnic identification, which w ill be discussed later, may well explain this alternative perspective. Rejection-identification model Based on social identity theory, researchers have found that in-gr oup identification will increase when individuals percei ve prejudice and discrimination from the dominant group (Tajfel & Turner, 1986). Although this model could be applied to different social groups, I focus on discussing the studies that are related to different ethnic groups. Branscombe, Schmitt, & Harvey (1999) confirmed this Rejection-Identification Model in their study of an African American population. They found that the ac ross-situation discrimination a nd prejudice from the dominant group not only predicted worse sc ores in terms of psychological well-being but also increased the participants in-group identification. Within the social identity literature, similar findings have also been reported by other studies examini ng different ethnic groups such as Jews (Dion &
23 Earn, 1975), Hispanics (Chavira & Phinney, 1991), and Mexican Americans (Schmitt & Branscombe, 2002). In these studies, each ethnic gr oup identified more with their group as they perceived more prejudice and di scrimination against their group. International Students Ethnic Identity Schimitt, Spears, and Branscombe (2003) tested the Rejection-Identification Model on international students and found there was a positive relationship between perceived discrimination and identification among interna tional students. However, the specific link between perceived discrimination and nationality was not found; instead, international students from different nations seemed to form a new id entity of international students in the U.S. Although this result may be due to the specific qu estions that were aske d in this study, it seems to suggest that there was no rela tionship between international st udents perceived discrimination and specific ethnic or national identification. Some other previous studies did not use the term of ethni c identity, but these studies examined constructs that are ve ry similar to ethnic identity. Se veral studies showed that for sojourners, strong identification with the home country and cultu re seems to predict better psychological adjustment, but id entification with the host coun try/culture is unrelated to sojourners adjustment (Ward, et al.,1999; Ward & Kennedy, 1994). Specifically, Luo (1996) found that home cultural identity maintenance wa s related to better psyc hological adjustment among Chinese sojourners in the United States. Recent research further verified that weak identification with home culture was associated with mood dist urbances among sojourners in Nepal (Ward & Rana-Deuba, 2000). In terms of social interacti on, Al-Sharideh and Goe (1998) f ound that strong ties with other students from the same cultural background strongly predicted bett er personal adjustment while assimilation to American culture better predicte d improved the internatio nal students personal
24 adjustment only when there were fewer ties with people with the same cultural backgrounds. In addition, strong ties with Americans seem to have an independent positive effect on the international students adjustment. Senel (2003) examined the relationship between ethnic identity and psychosocial adaptation among interna tional students and the results suggested that sojourners psychosocial adaptation was predicted by their et hnic identification. Theoretical Models for Perceived Justice, Ethn ic Identity, and Sociocultural Adaptation Due to the lack of literature and theories that link the three major constructs in a coherent manner, my study uses the buffering model of social support (Cohen & Wills, 1985) and the match hypothesis (Frese, 1999) to explain the possibl e interrelationships of the major constructs. The Buffering Model of Social Support In the social support literature, the bufferi ng model hypothesizes that social support would become more relevant to ones well-being prim arily when the person is under stress because social support buffers people from pathogenic stressful events (Cohen & Wills, 1985). In other words, social support would appear most importa nt when stress is high but less salient when stress is low. Ethnic groups th eoretically would provide the soci al support with direct social resources for international students. High et hnic identity may ther efore buffer perceived discrimination and enhance internationa l students sociocultural adaptation. The Match Hypothesis The match hypothesis is further built upon th e buffering model. Cohen and Wills (1985) contended that the buffering effect would be mo st significant when there is a match between the kind of stressors and the type of available support. Frese (1999) extended their argument about matching and hypothesized that social support with direct access to so cial resources should have the most significant effect on social st ressors. His study on Germ an blue-collar workers confirmed that the more socially-oriented sy mptoms of psychologica l dysfunction such as
25 irritation/strain and anxiety were most affected by the buffering effect of social support than the other, less socially oriented symptoms such as psychosomatic complaints and depression. In other words, the match of social stressors a nd socially oriented symptoms showed the most significant buffering effect of social support. The match hypothe sis suggests that the buffering effect of ethnic identity may be most signifi cant between international students perceived discrimination and their sociocultural adaptation b ecause there is a match between social stressor and socially oriented symptoms. Rationale From the above literature review of the major constructs in my study, we can conclude that there are gaps between cultural approaches and so cial justice approaches relating to research on international students adjustme nt. Within the cultural framew ork, research about sojourners adjustment was mainly divided into psychologi cal adjustment and sociocultural adaptation. Although research about sojourners psychological adjustment links et hnic identity to sojourners psychological well-being, the intrapsychic focus loses insight into the social interaction aspect of sojourners adjustment process. The rela tionship between ethnic identity and sojourners sociocultural adaptation still awaits further research. In addition, previous studies on sociocultu ral adaptation emphasized cognitive processes and abilities or acculturation. These studies focused on international students personal improvement and therefore, the research results could then easily become excuses to blame the victims. In addition, there were much fewer studi es looking at sojourners adjustment from the social justice perspective. Most prior organizational justice research focused on settings like families, classrooms, or workplaces and powerless populations such as wives, adolescents, and employees. International students who are vulnera ble to discrimination, such as racial/ethnic minorities and immigrants, have not received much research attention within the social justice
26 field. Although several research ers have attempted to link perceived discrimination to sojourners psychological well-bein g, the concept of perceived justice has not yet been linked to sojourners sociocultural adap tation. Therefore, the objectiv e of my study was to examine international students sociocultural adaptation fro m both social justice and cultural perspectives, with a particular focus on et hnic identity. I generated the foll owing research questions and hypotheses to further explore the gaps in previo us literature. The first research question rela tes to whether percei ved justice predicts more sociocultural adaptation among international students. Previous research has shown that perceived discrimination among sojourners predicts less psychological adju stment, such as lower life satisfaction (Sam, 2001) and incr eased identity conflicts (Le ong & Ward, 2000). And previous research has also shown that soj ourners sociocultural adaptation is highly associated with their psychological adjustment (Ward & Kennedy, 1999; Zheng & Berry, 1991). Therefore, I hypothesized that interna tional students perceived procedur al justice woul d predict their sociocultural adaptation as well. The second aim of my study is to determine wh ether international students ethnic identity is positively related to their so ciocultural adaptation. Previous re search has shown that cultural identity maintenance is related to better psyc hological adjustment am ong sojourners (Luo, 1996; Ward et al., 1999; Ward & Kennedy, 1994). In ad dition, Senels (2003) study on international students suggested that sojourners psychosoc ial adaptation was predicted by their ethnic identification. Therefore, I hypothesized that in ternational students higher ethnic identity predicts their better sociocultural adaptation. The third aim of my study is to explore whet her ethnic identity mode rates the relationship between perceived justice and so ciocultural adaptation among inte rnational students. According
27 to the buffering model of social support and the match hypothesis (Cohen & Wills, 1985), social support from the ethnic groups could theoretically buffer the stressful feelings of perceived procedural injustice and therefore help sojourners to have better socioc ultural adaptation. When perceived procedural justice is high, ethnic identity might not appear especially helpful; however, when perceived procedural justice is low, ethnic identity may be crucial to international students sociocultural adaptation. Therefore, I hypothesize that the association between perceived justice and sociocultural adaptation among in ternational students would be moderated by ethnic identity level.
28 CHAPTER 2 METHODS Participants A total of 152 international students at the University of Florida were recruited to complete a survey either online or in hard-copy paper format. Specifically, 89 students completed the online survey and 63 students completed the paper form of the survey. Ov erall, 29 participants did not finish 90% of the survey (19.1%) and f our participants failed to answer both quality testing items correctly (2.6%). The data from those 33 participants were deleted, leaving 119 participants in the sample. Among the remaining 119 participants, 59.7% we re Asian/Pacific Islanders (including 8.4% Eastern Indian), 21.0% we re White/Caucasian, 14.3% were Hispanic/Latino/Latina, 2.5% were Arab/Middle Eastern, 0.8% was Black/Afri cans, 0.8% was multiracial, and 0.8% did not report their race/ethnicity. Compared with the stat istics provided by Open Doors (Institute of International Education, 2005) annua l report on international student s, this sample seems roughly proportionate to the international student body in the U.S colleges and universities and similar to the international student popul ation of UF with the excep tion that there were fewer Black/Africans in my sample. The Open Doors annual report on international students in the U.S. (Institute of Internationa l Education, 2005) shows that stude nts from Asia comprised the majority (58%) followed by Europe (12.7%), Latin America (12%), Africa (6.3%), South America (6.1%), the Middle East (5.5%), and Cent ral America (3.4%). In addition, according to the UF International Centers Fall 2006 statisti cs, 60.9% of UF internatio nal students are from Asia, 15.9% from Latin America, 11.6% from Europe, 10.1% from South America, 5.0% from Middle East, 4.2% from Africa, a nd 3.2% from Central America.
29 In terms of gender composition, 54.6% of the sample were male and 45.4% were female. Approximately 80.7% were single and 19.3% were married. The mean age of the sample was 26.88 years ( SD = 5.28), with a range from 18 to 44. The time participants had spent studying in the U.S. ranged from less then 1month to 182 months ( M = 28.80 months or about 2 years and 5 months; SD = 28.19 months). A total of 58.8% were Ph.D. students, 21.0% were masters students, 12.6% were undergradu ate students, ,and 6.7% report ed studying in other programs which may include the intensive English language program, exchange student programs, or postdoctoral programs. 0.8% of respondents did not sp ecify their program. A total of 94.1% of the sample reported that their fi rst language was not English. Measures Demographic Questionnaire The participants were asked to complete a demographic questi onnaire in the first part of the survey, including questions a bout age, gender, year s in the U.S., migratory plans, language fluency, and some questions about experiences/a ttitudes toward counseling services on campus. A copy of the demographic questionn aire is located in Appendix A. Perceived Justice Inventory Perceived procedural justice was measured by th e procedural justice items of the Perceived Justice Inventory (PJI), which I adapted from the Health Care Justice Inventory (HCJI; Fondacaro et al., 2005). The HCJI has different vers ions with items that are modified to be applied to different contexts, for example, th e provider version (HCJI-P) and the health plan version (HPJI-HP). The PJI contains the same items as the HCJI and I only modified the contextspecific terms to measure international students perceived justice of the universitys services when they first arrived in the U.S. Here is an example of the modification: on the first item of
30 the HCJI-P, Your health plan representative lis tened to you was modified as Your university representative listened to you in the PJI. The PJI contains a total of 34 items with 28 procedural justice ite ms and 6 distributive justice items. It uses a four-point Likert sc ale for response options ra nging from 0 (strongly disagree) to 3 (strongly agree); higher total scores indicate more perceived justice. Based on my literature review, I only used th e procedural justice items in my analyses; however, the total score of the PJI distributive ju stice items could possibly be used for further analyses. Fondacaro et al.s (2005) study of a sample with mostly Caucasian and Asian cl ients showed that the reliability for the HCJIs procedural justic e subscales were pretty high, with Cronbachs coefficient alpha of .93, .91, and .91 for the HCJI -P procedural justice subscales, Trust, Impartiality, and Participation and alphas of .89, .86, and .87 for the HCJI-HP procedural subscales, Trust, Impartiality, and Participati on. In addition, they found these subscale scores were all significantly correlated to the patients satisfaction level ( p <.01), which suggests good concurrent validity. A copy of the Perceived Ju stice Inventory is lo cated in Appendix B. Multigroup Ethnic Identity Measure Ethnic identity level was measured by the Multigroup Ethnic Ident ity Measure (MEIM) (Phinney, 1992). The MEIM is a 12-item Likert-type scale with response options ranging from 1 (strongly disagree) to 4 (strongly agree). The ME IM contains two subscal es: Ethnic Identity Search (EIS) and Affirmation, Belonging, and Commitment (ABC) (Robert, Phinney, Masse, Chen, Roberts, & Romero, 1999). Based on sample s of a variety of ethnic groups in related studies, Fischer and Moradi (2001) concluded that MEIM scores have shown good reliability in comparison to other identity measures, with Cronbach alphas ranging from .70 for a mixed sample of African Americans and African Nationa ls to .92 for a sample of Caucasian college women. Specifically, Cronbach alphas for the EI S subscale ranged from .65 for a sample of
31 Muslim adolescent girls to mid-.80 for a samp le of ethnically dive rse college students. Cronbachs alphas for the ABC subscale ranged from mid-.70 for a sample of ethnically diverse high school students to mid-.80 for a sample of Muslim female teenagers. As for the MEIMs validity, Robert et al. (1999) stat ed that one strong indicator for the measures construct validity is the positive association betw een MEIM scores and the degree of ethnicity salience across various ethnic groups. Fischer and Moradi ( 2001) reviewed studies about the MEIM and concluded that the construct valid ity of the MEIM is fairly g ood because the global and subscale scores were related to other cult ural variables in theo retically predic ted directions. A copy of the MEIM is located in Appendix C. Sociocultural Adaptation Scale Sociocultural adaptation (difficulty) was meas ured by the Sociocultu ral Adaptation Scale (SCAS) This is an instrument especially designed for sojourners, namely international students who are not immigrants. The SCAS is a 29-item five-point Likert-type scale with response options ranging from 1 (no difficulty) to 5 (ext reme difficulty). The author of the SCAS suggested using the mean item score when using the SCAS (Colleen Ward, personal communication). Previous research using factor analysis also did not support the division of the behavioral subscale and cogniti ve subscale (Ward & Kennedy, 1999) Therefore, the mean item score was used in my analyses. Higher mean item scores represented more sociocultural adaptation difficulty As for the SCASs reliability, Wa rd and Kennedy (1999) concluded from previous studies that the internal consistency alph as have ranged from .75 for a sample of Britons in Hong Kong to .91 for a sample of multinational intern ational students in New Zealand. Also, support for the SCASs construct validity wa s shown through the significant correlations between SCAS scores and meas ures of psychological well-bei ng in various studies (Ward & Kennedy, 1999). Please see Appendix D for a copy of the SCAS.
32 Quality Testing Items Two quality testing items were included to ch eck whether the participants responses were valid. These items were worded as, This is a quality testing item, please just write 2 (Mainly Disagree) for this item. If the participants fail ed to answer both of the quality items correctly, their responses were excluded from my analyses. Ho wever, if they left the quality items blank or at least answered either quality item correc tly, their responses were retained. Please see Appendix B, item 15, for an example of a quality testing item. Procedure Purposive sampling was conducted to recruit Un iversity of Florida (UF) international students to take the survey. The anonymous survey was first administered as an online survey. An invitation letter was sent out as an email through the UF inte rnational students listserv and other various UF international st udent organizations listservs. The same invitation letter was also posted on various UF internat ional students related websites. In the invitation email/post, there was a link that the participants could click on to go to the website to take the online survey. There were 89 people who responded to the onli ne survey, and 61 people finished the online survey. Additional paper copies with the same i nvitation letter and content were distributed to UF international students at various internati onal student events, includi ng international coffee house (a weekly, informal gathering for inte rnational students hos ted by the universitys International Center), Chines e and Taiwanese New Years cel ebration, and Korean students church gatherings. There were 60 participants who took the survey in the paper form, and 42 of these participants completed the survey. Pleas e see Appendix E for documents related to the process of obtaining permission from the UF Institutional Review Board (IRB) to conduct my study.
33 CHAPTER 3 RESULTS Preliminary Analyses Inclusion of Participants Base d on the Quality Testing Items I excluded the four participants (one from th e online survey and three from the paper form survey) who answered both of the quality tes ting items incorrectly. A series of independentsamples t -tests was then conducted on the variables to justify the inclusion of the participants who only answered one quality testing item correc tly and those who left these items blank. The results show that there was no significant mean difference ( p > .05) between the 103 participants who answered both quality items correctly a nd the 16 participants who only answered one correctly or left both items blank: sociocultural adaptation (SCAS), t (117) = -.16, Perceived Procedural Justice (PPJ) t (117) = -.87, MEIM-ABC, t (117) = .87, and MEIM-EIS, t (117) = -.17. Therefore, it was deemed justifiable to incl ude in the analyses thes e 16 participants who did not completely fail the two quality testing items. Similarity of Data from Different Sources A series of independent-samples t -tests was conducted to examine whether the data collected from online and from the paper forms we re justified to be combined in the analyses. Table 3-1 shows the means and standard deviatio ns from each of the measures, from both the online and paper form surveys. For SCAS, the mean difference between the participants from the online and paper form formats was not significant, t (117) = -.38, p > .05. For PPJ, the Levenes test was significant, so I used statistics with equal variance not assumed; the mean difference between the participants from online a nd from the paper form format was not significant, t (114.43) = -.78, p >.05. Ethnic identity variab les were measured using the two MEIM subscales: ABC and EIS. For the ABC subscale, the mean difference was not significant, t (117) = .16,
34 p >.05. For the EIS subscale, the mean difference was also not significant, t (117) = -1.25, p >.05. Overall, there were no significant group differen ces found for the proposed variables between the participants who filled out the survey online and on paper. The two sources of data were therefore combined into one samp le for all subsequent analyses. Normality Assumption The normality assumption of the variables was checked. Table 3-2 shows the skewness and kurtosis values of the variable s in the analyses. Due to the small sample size, the Z score significance level of .01 was deem ed appropriate (Field, 2000). I found that PPJ and ABC were somewhat negatively skewed, but EIS and SCASs Z score values did not exceed 2.56. All the variables Kolmogorov-Smirnov tests fo r normality were significant ( p < .05). However, the normal Q-Q plots and detrended nor mal Q-Q plots were acceptable, as were their histograms for EIS and SCAS. There were some outliers for PPJ, ABC, and SCAS, but none of the outliers were extreme points. In addition, Table 3-3 indicates that there was not much difference between each variables Mean and 5% Trimmed Mean (the mean after deleting the 5% outliers), and the differences were all well below one standard deviation. Overall, based on the various criteria discussed above, EIS and SCAS seemed roughly normally distributed, but PPJ and ABC were negatively skewed. Because the outliers did not seem to impact the means, they were all kept in the analyses. To address the non-normality of PPJ and ABC, I used square root transformation with the procedures suggested by Tabachnick an d Fidell (2006) for mildly negatively skewed variables. The transformed PPJ (tPPJ) variable had a highly significant ne gative correlation with the original PPJ variable ( r = -.97, p < .01) and the transformed ABC (tABC) variable also had a highly significant negative correlation with the original ABC variable ( r = -.98, p < .01). Therefore, I reversed the direction when inte rpreting tPPJ and the tABC. The skewness and kurtosis values of these variables are also listed in Table 3-2.
35 Factor Analysis of Perceived Procedural Justice Originally, Fondacaro et al. ( 2005) proposed three factors for the construct of procedural justice Trust, Impartiality, and Participation. However, because the PJI was adapted to measure international students perceived justice of uni versity services, it was necessary to check the measures factor structure for this specific sample. An oblique-rotation exploratory factor analysis (EFA) with the Promax procedure wa s conducted on the 28 procedural justice items from the PJI. A promax procedure was appropriate here because it allowed the possible factors to correlate with each other to find a better fit for the da ta structure, in addition to the initial test of orthogonal solution (Russell, 2002). After rotation, four factors were extracted with eigenvalues ranging from 12.63 to .75. They accounted fo r a total of 57.0% of the variance. Reise, Waller, and Comrey (2000) suggested usin g a parallel analysis to decide the number of eligible factors that should be retained or retracted (p. 290). In a parallel analysis, a random set of data can be generated based on the sample si ze and the number of scale items in a study. By examining where the scree plot derived from my study crosses the scree plot from the simulated dataset, Reise et al. (2000) s uggested that factors with smalle r eigenvalues than the simulated eigenvalues should not be extracte d. The parallel analysis genera ted a simulated random data set based on my sample size of 119 and 28 variables. By examining the first five simulated eigen values (2.03, 1.86, 1.74, 1.64, and 1.55) and the initial eigenvalues (13.02, 1.95, 1.54, 1.16, and 0.98), I found support for two perceived procedural justice factors, with the first factor explaining about 46.49% of variance (eigenvalue = 13.02) and the second factor explaining an additional 6.97% of variance (eig envalue = 1.95) before rotation. An oblique-solution EFA with promax proced ure was then conducted by specifying a twofactor structure. After rotati on, the two factors collectively a ccounted for 50.0% of the variance (Factor 1 eigenvalue = 12.57, 44.9%; Factor 2 eigenvalue = 1.43, 5.1%). However, results also
36 showed that factor 1 and factor 2 were highly correlated (r = .73). Therefore, a one factor solution of perceived procedural justice seemed more appropriate for this sample. Finally, an EFA was conducted with the one-factor structure. This single factor explained 44.7% of the variance with the eigenvalue of 12.53 after extrac tion. A stringent factor loading criterion of .50 was used to aid item-retention decisions, and four items (item 28, 2, 7, and 21) with factor loadings less than .50 were therefore excluded. Th e factor loadings are presented in Table 3-4. Perceived procedural justice (PPJ) was measured by the 24 procedural justice items that had factor loadings higher than .50. Reliability of Variables in the Analyses. Score reliabilities (Cronbachs coefficient alphas) were satisfactory and ranged from .73 to .96 for this sample. The 24-item Perceived Proce dural Justice Subscales reliability was .96. As for ethnic identity measured by the MEIM, the 5item EIS subscales reliability was .73 and the 7-item ABC subscales reliability was .87. The 29-item SCASs reliability was .92 for this sample. Analyses Perceived Procedural Justice and Sociocultural Adaptation A bivariate correlation analysis was conducted to test the hy pothesis that international students perceived procedural justice would predict their sociocultural adaptation. The total summed score of the 24 procedural justice items in the PJI was used to represent international students perceived proce dural justice, whereas th e level of international students sociocultural adaptation difficulty was represented by the mean item score on the SCAS. Therefore, in this bivariate correlation, I entered th e variables, tPPJ and mean-SCA S. Also, I chose the one-tailed test of significance fo r this bivariate correlation because there was a directional hypothesis derived from previous literature The result indicated that pe rceived procedural justice was
37 indeed positively corre lated with sociocultu ral adaptation, although the relationship was relatively modest ( r = .17, p < .05). The effect size is consider ed small to medium (Cohen, 1992). Ethnic Identity and Sociocultural Adaptation A multiple regression analysis was conducted to test whether international students ethnic identity negatively predicted thei r sociocultural adaptation. The sc ores of the MEIMs subscales, EIS and tABC, were simultaneously entered as in dependent variables, and the SCAS mean item score served as the dependent variable. Regres sion diagnostics revealed no significant concerns regarding multicollinearity (V IF = 1.30 and Tolerance = .77) In addition, the bivariate correlation between tABC and EIS was lower than .70 ( r = .48, p <.01), which confirmed the adequacy of using the two subscales scores rath er than a total MEIM score in the regression (Tabachnick & Fidell, 2006, p. 84). Examinati on of the normal probab ility plot of the standardized residuals did not s how signs of violation for norma lity. Examination of the scatter plot of the standardized resi duals also did not show signs of violation for linearity or homoscedasticity. In terms of sta ndardized residual values, there was only one outlier identified that exceeded three standard deviations. In terms of Mahalanobis distance values, only one of the values exceeded the critical value for two inde pendent variables (13.82). In terms of Cooks Distance, none of the values exceeded 1. Overall, there were no outliers that were too deviant from the normal distribution. However, the result s showed that the regression model with EIS and tABC as the independent variables was not significant, F (2, 116) = .76, p > .05 and it accounted for only 1% of the variation in inte rnational students sociocultural adaptation difficulty, R2 = .01, p > .05. According to Cohens (1992) standard on R2, the effect size of ethnic identity factors on sociocultural adaptation was small.
38 Moderation Effect of Ethnic Identity Factors Two separate hierarchical multiple regressi on analyses were conducted to test whether either ethnic identity factor would moderate the relationship between international students perceived procedural justice and sociocultural ad aptation difficulty. To deal with the collinearity problem of the interaction produc t term in the regression, every entered variable was centered from their mean (Aiken & West, 1991). In the first hierarchical multiple regression an alysis testing the moderation effect of tABC, centered tPPJ and centered tABC were entered in the first block while their centered product term was entered in the second step. The SCAS mean item score served as the dependent variable. Regression diagnostics revealed no sign ificant concerns regarding multicollinearity (VIF ranged from 1.00 to 1.01 and Tolerance rang ed from .99 to 1.00). There were also no concerns related to normality, lin earity, or homoscedasticity when I examined the residual plots. In addition, there were no outli ers identified that exceeded thre e standard deviations for its standardized residuals. Mahala nobis distance value revealed only two case values above the critical value for three independent variables (16.27) and no values of Cooks Distance exceeded one. Results indicated a lack of a significant moderator effect of tABC on the relationship between perceived procedural ju stice and sociocultural adaptati on. The first block of results showed that the regression model with tPPJ and tABC as independent variables was not significant, F (2, 116) = 2.45, p > .05. A combination of tPPJ and tABC accounted for only 4% of the variance of intern ational students level of sociocu ltural adaptation difficulty. The second step results showed that the additional interacti on term of tABC with t PPJ was not significant either, R2 = .01, F (1, 115) = 1.14, p > .05. Thus, ethnic identity in terms of the aspect of affirmation, belonging, and commitment did not a ppear to moderate the relationship between
39 international students perceived procedural justice and their le vel of sociocultural adaptation difficulty. In the second hierarchical multiple regression analysis, centered tPPJ and centered MEIMEIS were entered in the first block and their pr oduct term was entered in the second step to predict the SCAS mean item score. Regressi on diagnostics revealed no significant concerns regarding multicollinearity (V IF ranged from 1.005 to 1.011 and Tolerance ranged from .99 to 1.00). Examination of the normal probability pl ot and the scatter plot of the regression standardized residuals did not show signs of violation for normality, linearity or homoscedasticity. There were no out liers identified for standardized residuals and no violation for Cooks Distance value. There was only two Ma halanobis distance value that exceeded the criterion for three indepe ndent variables (16.27). The first block results showed that tPPJ and MEIM-EIS did not account for significant variation in SCAS scores, R2 = .04, F (2, 116) = 2.30, p > .05. However, the second step results showed that the additional interaction term of EIS by tPPJ was significant, F (1, 115) = 5.30, p < .05 and the interaction term accounted for additio nal 4% of the varia tion in international students sociocultural adaptation difficulty, R2 = .04, p < .05. This indicated that ethnic identity search moderated the relationship between intern ational students percei ved procedural justice and their level of sociocultura l adaptation difficulty. Although the effect size of the moderation effect of EIS was considered small ac cording to Cohens (1992) standard on R2, a 2 to 3 % interaction or moderation effect in survey stud ies is considered a relatively large moderation effect (McClelland & Judd, 1993). Plotting the moderation effect To aid in interpreting the interaction effect, results were plotted following recommendations by Aiken and West (1991, pp. 12-14) This plot appears in Figure 3-1. First, a
40 regression equation including the un standardized B weights of tPPJ EIS, and their interaction term was calculated. By assigning EIS values as the EIS mean and plus and minus one standard deviation, three plot lines were created repr esenting the relationships between perceived procedural justice and sociocultu ral adaptation (difficulty) when ethnic identity search values ranged from high to low. Specifically, when perc eived procedural justi ce was low (tPPJ at the point of one standard deviation above the mean ; recall tPPJ was transformed from PPJ), high and low EIS values resulted in a restricted range of predicted SCAS scores from 2.20 to 2.34. When perceived procedural justice was high (tPPJ at the point of one stan dard deviation below the mean), high and low EIS values resulted in more variable SCAS scores, which ranged from 1.90 to 2.28. The difference between high EIS and lo w EIS participants SCAS scores of .38 was almost two-thirds of the SCAS standard devia tion (.61), which suggested a large effect size difference. Significance of the simple regression slopes To further test whether these three simple regression slopes with EIS at high, medium, and low values are significantly different from zer o, I conducted simple regression analyses outlined by Aiken and West (1991). In this procedure, two new moderation vari ables were created by using the moderator (EIS) variable minus and pl us one EIS standard de viation. Furthermore, these two new variables and the original EIS were multiplied by the predictor (tPPJ) to form three interaction terms. Then, the criterion variable (SCAS) was regressed on the predictor (tPPJ), the conditioned moderation variables (EIS minus 1 SD above the mean, at the mean, and 1 SD below the mean), and their product terms. As indicated by Aiken and West (1991), the ttests of the predictor variables (tPPJ) regression coefficients in the regression equations reflect whether these simple regression slopes are si gnificantly different from zero. The results are shown in Table 3-5. As indicated in Table 35, the relationship between tPPJ and SCAS was
41 significant only for the particip ants with low EIS but nonsigni ficant for those with high and medium EIS. In addition, these simple slopes we re also significantly different from one another and coefficient of the moderati on term was significant (tPPJxEIS, = -.21, t = -2.30, p < .05) in the test of moderation eff ect (Aiken and West, 1991). Exploratory Analyses I also explored other variables which were not included in my main hypotheses. Since my focused variable, tPPJ, only had a modest relatio nship with international students sociocultural adaptation difficulty, other variables that may ha ve significant or stronger relationships with international students level of sociocultural adap tation difficulty were expl ored using a series of bivariate correlations. The results showed that international students perceived distributive justice ( r = -.21, p < .05), level of discomfort in communicating in English ( r = .43, p < .01), and length of study in the U.S. ( r = -.27, p < .01) were all significantly related to their level of sociocultural adaptation difficulty. The correlations show that the relationship s between sociocultural adaptation and these variables were all in predicted directions. Specifically, there wa s a negative relationship between international students sociocultural adaptation di fficulty and perceived distributive justice, a negative relationship between their sociocultural adaptation difficulty and their length of study in the U.S., and a positive relationship between thei r sociocultural adaptation difficulty and their level of discomfort in communicating in E nglish. According to Cohen (1992), perceived distributive justice and length of study in the U.S. represented small effect sizes and level of discomfort in communicating in English had a medium to large effect size.
42 Table 3-1. Mean and standard deviation fr om online survey or paper form survey. Online Paper Variable Mean Std. deviation Mean Std. deviation Perceived Procedural Justice (PPJ) 48.7417.7151.80 10.94 Affirmation, Belong, and Commitment (MEIM-ABC) 23.144.17 23.03 3.52 Ethnic Identity Search (MEIM-EIS) 12.583.6213.40 3.40 Sociocultural adaptation (difficulty) 2.15.652.19 .57 Table 3-2. Skewness and kurtosis of the variables in the analyses. Variable Skewness Std. error Kurtosis Std. error Perceived Procedural Ju stice (PPJ) -.64.22-.15 .44 Transformed PPJ (tPPJ) -.21.22-.40 .44 Affirmation, Belong, and Commitment (MEIM-ABC) -.82.22 .93 .44 Transformed MEIM-ABC .04.22-.70 .44 Ethnic Identity Search (MEIM-EIS) -.38.22-.20 .44 Sociocultural adaptation (difficulty) .52.22-.03 .44 Table 3-3. Mean, 5% trimmed mean, and standard deviation of the vari ables in the analyses. Variable Mean 5% Trimmed Mean Std. Deviation Perceived Procedural Justice (PPJ) 188.8.131.5215.21 Transformed PPJ (tPPJ) 4.534.561.70 Affirmation, Belong, and Commitment (MEIM-ABC) 23.10 23.383.89 Transformed MEIM-ABC 2.292.26.83 Ethnic Identity Search (MEIM-EIS) 12.9213.003.54 Sociocultural adaptation (difficulty) 184.108.40.206
43 Table 3-4. Exploratory factor analysis of the Perceived Procedural Justice (PPJ) items. Item no. Item Factor Loading 26 Overall, you were satisfie d with the way your university representative treated you during decision making. .89 13 You were treated as a valued st udent member of the university. .83 25 Overall, your university repres entative treated you fairly. .82 15 Your university representative di d not pay attention to what you had to say. -.81 1 Your university representative listened to you. .80 9 Your university representative wa s open to your point of view. .77 18 You felt comfortable with the way your university representative handled the situation. .76 16 Your university representati ve was biased against you. -.73 11 Your university representati ve was honest with you. .72 17 The decision was based on as much good information and informed opinion as possible. .71 19 Your university representati ve treated you with dignity. .70 3 Your university representative handled the situation in a very thorough manner. .70 12 Your university representative s howed little concern for you as an individual. -.69 6 You were treated as if you didnt matter. -.67 23 You felt you had personal control over how the situation was handled. .67 22 Your university representative asked about your preferences for what should be done. .66 10 Your university representative handled the situation in a very careless manner. -.66 5 Your university representati ve treated you with respect. .64 4 Your university representative did something improper. -.63 27 Your university representative probably treated you worse than other students because of your personal characteristics. -.62 14 You fully agreed with the solu tions that you and your university representative arrived at. .60 24 You felt you had personal control over the decision that was made. .59 20 Your university representative probably treated you with less respect than other students. -.57 8 Your university representative asked for your input before a decision was made. .56 21 You had a choice to reject your university representatives recommendation. .48 7 You accepted your university representatives decision. .42 2 Your university representative tr eated you in an impartial manner. .42 28 You could have had the decision reconsidered. .11
44 Table 3-5. Simple slope regressi on analyses of procedural justic e (tPPJ) predicting sociocultural adaptation (SCAS) at low, medium, and hi gh ethnic identity involvement (EIS). Regression slope B Std. error of B Beta t Significance SCAS on tPPJ at high EIS -.02.05-.06-.46 .65 SCAS on tPPJ at mean EIS .06.03.151.70 .09 SCAS on tPPJ at low EIS .01.05.372.93 .004 SCAS on tPPJ1.82 1.89 1.96 2.03 2.10 2.17 2.24 2.31 -1.6980.0001.698tPPJSCAS z + 1 SD z mean z 1 SD EIS mean EIS + 1 SD EIS 1 SD tPPJ: 0.055 EIS: 0.017 *** Interaction: -0.022 *** Figure 3-1. Moderation effect of ethnic identity involvement (EIS ) for the relationship between procedural justice (tPPJ) and sociocultura l adaptation (SCAS). Higher tPPJ scores mean lower procedural justice and higher SCAS scores mean more sociocultural adaptation difficulty.
45 CHAPTER 4 DISCUSSION Previous research on sojourners adjust ment has focused on studying how cultural variables are associated with personal psychological wellbeing. My study goes beyond the current literature to examine a systemic factor, perceived procedural just ice, and its association, along with ethnic identity, to international st udents level of soci ocultural adaptation. Specifically, the first analysis examined the relationship between international students perceived procedural justice of university services and their le vel of sociocultural adaptation difficulty. The results revealed that there was a significant positive relationship between international students perceive d procedural justice and their sociocultural adaptation. In my study, international students were asked to recall how they were treated by university representatives when they first came to the U. S. The study result thus suggests that how they perceived being treated predicted their current level of sociocultural adapta tion. Previous studies have only examined the effects of sojourners perceived discrimination on their psychological well-being (Leong & Ward, 2000; Sam, 2001). The cu rrent study further indi cated that perceived unfair treatment may actual ly impact sojourners sociocultural adaptation as well. This finding raises the importance of consider ing international students percei ved procedural justice in the universitys services. However, the result is correlational in nature. It is possible that international students current sociocultural adap tation might affect their recalled perception of earlier experiences with university services. Ther efore, future research with experimental or longitudinal designs could further determine how pr ocedural justice principles measured with the PJI may be applied to improving the universitys services for in ternational students and how these improvements may affect students sociocultura l adaptation. Also, future studies could examine the relationship between th eir current perceived procedural justice of university services
46 and their sociocultural adaptation. In addition, one valuable directi on of future research would be the exploration of other factors that may be associated with so journers perceived procedural justice regarding university services. The second analysis examined the relations hip between international students ethnic identity and their sociocultura l adaptation. Surprisingly, the two ethnic identity factors did not significantly predict international students le vel of sociocultural adap tation. Previous studies showed that a high level of ethnic identity is related to ethnic minorities psychological wellbeing (Phinney, Cantu, & Kurtz, 1997; Sam, 20 00) and that cultural identity maintenance was associated with sojourners better psychologica l adjustment (Luo, 1996; Ward et al., 1999; Ward & Kennedy, 1994). However, results from the presen t study suggested that ethnic identity does not seem to have a relationship with international students soci ocultural adaptation as it might have with their psycholo gical adjustment. In other words, th is finding might indicate that ethnic association cannot really direc tly address internati onal students encounte red difficulties at school although it might make them feel better in facing the di fficulty. We can see from the literature that sojourners sociocultural adaptati on is highly correlated with their psychological adjustment (Ward & Kennedy, 1999; Zheng & Berry, 1991). Therefore, this result highlights the importance of improving procedural justice in univers ity services to international students to help boost their sociocultural adaptation as well as psychological adjustment. The third analysis examined whether ethnic id entity moderated the relationship between international students perceive d procedural justice and their sociocultural adaptation. I found one of the ethnic identity factors, Ethnic Identity Search (EIS ), did serve as a moderator in this relationship. However, the Affirmation, Belongi ng and Commitment (ABC) factor did not seem to have a moderation effect.
47 These moderator results also have several interesting implications. First, the results showed that only the behavioral asp ect, and not the emotional asp ect of ethnic identity, had the moderation effect on this relations hip. Previous studies of the MEIM s factors indicated that EIS involves an active behavioral involvement in ones ethnic gr oup and ABC relates to ones positive feelings and emotional closeness to the ethnic group (Robert et al., 1999). Ethnic identity search is equal to Phinneys (1990) proposed constr uct of ethnic identity, ethnic behaviors and practices. Therefore, this resu lt seems to suggest that only high behavioral involvement with ones ethnic gr oup contributes to the moderati on effect while the degree of emotional closeness to ones ethnic group alone does not seem sufficient to make any significant difference in sojourners sociocu ltural adaptation. This finding is consistent with the match hypothesis in the buffering model, which theorizes th at social support with direct access to social resources should have the most significant effect on social stressors (F rese, 1999) because only ethnic identity involvement rather than emotional ethnic identification moderated the impact of perceived procedural injustice on the internationa l students sociocultural adaptation in my study. In addition, this moderation effect of ethni c involvement also suggests there might be group differences in international students socioc ultural adaptation. The leve l of ethnic identity involvement did not predict sojourners sociocul tural adaptation directly but served as the grouping criterion differentiating the relationship between percei ved procedural justice and sociocultural adaptation among sojour ners. In Figure 3-1, we can see clearly that th is relationship differed between the international students with high and low ethnic identity involvement. For international students with low ethnic identity in volvement, their perceived procedural justice and sociocultural adaptation was positively correl ated as predicted. However, for international students with high ethnic ident ity involvement, it appears there was no relationship between their
48 perceived procedural justice a nd sociocultural adaptation. In ot her words, this suggests that sociocultural adaptation of intern ational students with high ethnic identity involvement may be less responsive to the variation of procedur al justice of the universitys services. This phenomenon could be partly explaine d by Cohen and Wills buffering model (1985), which theorizes that high social support could ma intain ones well-being a nd buffer the impact of stress. According to my original hypothesis ba sed on the buffering model, high ethnic identity involvement would buffer the impact of low pr ocedural justice and maintain sojourners sociocultural adaptation. We can see that the bu ffering model correctly verified this relationship (Fig. 3-1). Participants with hi gh ethnic involvement had less soci ocultural adaptation difficulty when perceived justice was low. (Please notice in Figure 3-1 that highe r tPPJ scores correspond to lower perceived procedural justice because the transformed tPPJ was signficantly negatively correlated with the original PPJ). Therefore, ethn ic identity involvement may be very important in sustaining international student s sociocultural adaptation when perceived procedural justice is low. However, it is worth noting that when perceive d procedural justice is high, strong ethnic identity involvement may serve more as a stabil izing factor for interna tional students possible growth, insofar as sociocultural adaptation can be considered a positive adjustment process and outcome. In Figure 3-1, we can see that when pro cedural justice was high (lower tPPJ scores), participants with low ethnic id entity involvement had less socioc ultural adaptation difficulty, but the sociocultural adaptation of pa rticipants with high ethnic iden tity involvement was about the same when perceived procedural justice was low. This finding showed some consistency with Netos (2002) study about Portuguese second ge neration immigrant adolescents, in which he found that there was a negative main effect of ethnic identity in pr edicting sociocultural
49 adaptation (Neto, 2002). However, my study did not find a significant main effect of ethnic identity. The stabilizing effect of ethnic identity involvement appeared only when perceived procedural justice was higher. Therefore, a reme dial solution of improving procedural justice might not significantly benefit international stud ents with strong ethnic identity involvement because their sociocultural adaptation may not be significantly related to procedural justice. Future research could focus on exploring the soci ocultural adaptation of the participants with high ethnic identity involvement. It would also be interesting to assess the stability of ethnic identity in future studies using e xperimental or longitudinal designs. In addition to these findings based on my ma in hypotheses, other variables that may be related to sojourners sociocul tural adaptation were examined. It was found that international students level of discomfort in communicating in English was positively correlated with their level of sociocultural adaptation di fficulty. This result is in line with previous findings that hostnational language fluency is hi ghly related with sojourners sociocultural adaptation (Senel, 2003; Ward et al., 2001). In addition, results indica ted that international st udents length of study in the U.S. also negatively correlated with their level of sociocultural adaptation difficulty. This confirmed a previous finding that sojourners sociocultural adaptation became better as they stayed in the host nation longer (Ward & Ke nnedy, 1996a, 1996b). What is surprising is that perceived distributive jus tice also was negatively related to sociocultural adaptation difficulty in my sample. This is inconsistent with previous theory and studies that have indicated that distributive justice would be deemed less im portant by people (Broc kner & Wiesenfeld, 1996; Chory-Assad & Paulsel, 2004). This finding may reflect the fact that international students indeed have fewer resources in the U.S. Future research could further explore these variables and how they might interact with perceived pro cedural justice or other cultural variables.
50 CHAPTER 5 LIMITATIONS AND FUTURE RESEARCH DIRECTIONS There are several limitations in my study that aw ait further exploration in future research. The first limitation is that my study used a sma ller and self-selected sa mple of international students in just one institution. One merit of the current study is that the sample seems roughly representative of the cu rrent international student body in U.S. colleges and universities. Future research that includes large and randomly selected samples may fu rther confirm my findings and their generalizability. A second limitation in th e current study is it s correlational design. Although the time sequence was set to suggest a causal inference indica ting the influence of perceived procedural justice on sociocultural adaptation, it may be argued that participants recollections could be biased based on curre nt adjustment experiences. Longitudinal and experimental designs could further ascertain the direc tion of the relationship. A third limitation of my study relates to the de velopment and use of the PJI in a university setting. By modifying the HCJI to measure pe rceived procedural justice for a sojourner population, the PJI is the first measure that inco rporates the concept of social justice for sojourners to evaluate the unive rsitys services. Alt hough the PJI had satisfac tory reliability in the study sample and the original model, and the HC JI has been shown to be a reliable and valid measure in health care settings (Fondacaro, Fr ogner, & Moos, 2005), the validity of the PJI might be compromised due to the modification and use in a different population. Future research could further validate the PJI by comparing it w ith other instruments which measure perceived discrimination. Also, future studies may also a pply the PJI to other minority populations in the university setting and explor e its factor structure w ith different populations. A fourth limitation of my study is that self-report measures might be subject to social desirability. It was found that the MEIM-ABC s ubscale was somewhat negatively skewed, which
51 might be the result of the participants tendenc y to provide socially desirable answers. In addition, some international stud ents with certain cultural norm s might not feel comfortable expressing their perceived injustice, especially regarding authority figu res such as university representatives. This could also be a possibl e reason why perceived pr ocedural justice was negatively skewed in my sample. Therefore, incl uding a social desirabil ity measure in future studies may be a viable way to address the issu e. Finally, the level of sociocultural adaptation difficulty was measured by the SCAS mean score in my study. Previous research has examined multiple dimensions of sociocultural adaptation and their correlations with psychological wellbeing (Spencer-Oatey & Xiong, 2006). Therefore, the multiple dimensions of sociocultural adaptation and their relationships with perceived procedural justice and other variables could be examined in future research. Overall, perceived justice app ears to be an important constr uct worthy of greater attention for the sojourner population. My study only fo cused on perceived procedural justice and sociocultural adaptation; therefore, future research could also examine the interrelated relationships between internati onal students perceived procedur al and distribu tive justice and their sociocultural and psychological adjustment. Also, in addition to et hnic identity, future research could explore whether other cultural f actors such as accultura tion would have direct effects on sojourners sociocultural adaptation or a moderation effect on the relationships between sojourners perceive d justice and adjustment.
52 APPENDIX A DEMOGRAPHIC QUESTIONNAIRE Please complete the following information. Circle on the item that best describes you. Please answer each question as accurately as you can. Re member that all your answers are strictly confidential. 1. What country are you from? (Please write the name of your country below) ________ 2. What is your gender? A. Female B. Male C. Other, please specify and write here __________ 3. What is your age? (Please write here) ________ 4. What is your relationship status? A. Single, not in a relationship B. Single, in a relationship C. Engaged D. Married E. Other, please specif y and write here __________ 5. What is your marital status? A. Now married B. Widowed C. Divorced D. Separated E. Never married F. Other, please specif y and write here __________ 6. What is your family status? A. Alone in U.S. B. Living with spouse, family, or relatives in U.S. C. Other, please specify and write here __________ 7. What is the name of the school you attend now? (Please write here) ____ _________________________ 8. What are you currently enrolled in? (circle all that apply) A. Language Program B. Undergraduate/ Bachelors Degree Program C. Masters degree or equivalent pr ogram (terminal masters program) D. Doctoral degree program E. Other, please specify and write here __________
53 53 9. How long have you been in the U.S.? (Please write below) TOTAL _______year(s) ____________month(s) 10. How long have you been studying in the U.S.? (Please write below) TOTAL _______year(s) ____________month(s) Please specify the time for th e following categories: Before college: _______year(s) ____________month(s) Undergraduate: _______year(s) ____________month(s) Graduate: _______year(s) ____________month(s) Language program: _______year(s) ____________month(s) Other: _______year(s) ____________month(s) 11. Have you used counseling services on campus? A. Yes B. No C. No, but I used/use counseling services outside of school 12. Will you consider using counse ling services on campus in the future? A. Yes, very likely B. Maybe C. Not likely D. No, it is the last thing I would consider 13. What is the main reason you do not want to use the counseling services on campus? A. Please circle this if you have used and/or will consider using the counseling services on campus if needed. B. I do not want to be labeled as having a mental disorder C. I do not know how counseling works and how it can help me D. Counseling services are not going to help my problems E. Language issues F. I use off-campus counseling services G. Other, please specify and write here __________
54 54 14. How comfortable are you using English to communicate with others? A. Very comfortable B. Comfortable C. Neutral D. Uncomfortable E. Very uncomfortable 15. Is English your mother tongue (first language)? A. Yes B. No, please write your fi rst language he re __________________ 16. Do you want to stay in the United States after you finish school? A. Yes B. No C. Not decided yet
55 APPENDIX B PERCEIVED JUSTICE INVENTORY (PJ I)UNIVERSITY REPRESENTATIVE Section A We would like to learn about your reactions to ho w your university representative (for example, staff at the international center, administrator, advisor, program director or instructor, etc.) makes decisions or provide services that ma y have important influences on you or other international students. Please think of a situatio n or an experience that you had w ith a university repr esentative when you first came to study in the United States in which a decision was made or service was provided (for example, getting your new I-20, so lving tuition fee relate d issues, transferring credits, deciding which courses to take and waive, disputing a grade, meeting program and school requirements, etc). If your current university is di fferent from the university you were studying at when you first came to the United States, please writ e that former university here ______________________ and use your experience with the former univers ity representative to answer the questions. PLEASE SELECT ONLY ONE SITUATION THAT AFFECTED YOU THE MOST AND BRIEFLY DESCRIBE IT BELOW Section B Please answer the following questions US ING THE SITUATION YO U DESCRIBED ABOVE. 1. Did this situation occur when you faced a staff member of the international center? Yes No 2. Did this situation occur when you faced an administrator or a clerk at other school administrative offices (e.g., Registrar Office, Gra duate School Office, or Financial Aid Office, etc.)? Yes No 3. Did this situation occur when you faced a representative in your department/program? Yes No
56 56 4. Did this situation occur when you faced anothe r party/parties other th an the ones listed above that were involved in this situation? Yes No If yes, please specify and wr ite the party/parties here ___________________________________________ 5. Was the situation related to your academic study? Yes No 6. Did the situation affect your life outside of school? Yes No 7. Did other international students ge t involved in this situation? Yes No 8. Was this situation resolved? Yes No If yes, how long did it take to resolve this situa tion? (Please write here) _______year(s) ____________month(s) ___________day(s)
57 57 Section C Read each item carefully and use that item to rate the situation you described above on the following scale, ranging from 1 (strongly disa gree) to 4 (strongly agree). Please choose the number that most closely matche s your response to each item. 1 2 3 4 Strongly Disagree Mainly Dis agree Mainly Agree Strongly Agree _____1. Your university represen tative listened to you. _____2. Your university representative trea ted you in an impartial manner. _____3. Your university representative handled the situation in a very thorough manner. _____4. Your university representative did something improper. _____5. Your university representati ve treated you with respect. _____6. You were treated as if you didnt matter. _____7. You accepted your university representatives decision. _____8. Your university representative asked fo r your input before a decision was made. _____9. Your university representative was open to your point of view. _____10. Your university representative handled th e situation in a very careless manner. _____11. Your university representa tive was honest with you. _____12. Your university representative showed lit tle concern for you as an individual. _____13. You were treated as a valued st udent member of the university. _____14. You fully agreed with the solutions that you and your university representative arrived at. _____15. This is a quality testing item, please just write 2 (Mai nly Disagree) for this item. _____16. Your university representative did not pa y attention to what you had to say. _____17. Your university representative was biased against you.
58 58 1 2 3 4 Strongly Disagree Mainly Dis agree Mainly Agree Strongly Agree _____18. The decision was based on as much good information and informed opinion as possible. _____19. You felt comfortable with the way your univers ity representative handl ed the situation. _____20. Your university representativ e treated you with dignity. _____21. Your university representative probably tr eated you with less re spect than other students. _____22. You had a choice to reject your unive rsity representatives recommendation. _____23. Your university representative asked about your preferences for what should be done. _____24. You felt you had personal control ove r how the situation was handled. _____25. You felt you had personal control ove r the decision that was made. _____26. Overall, your university repres entative treated you fairly. _____27. Overall, you were satisfied with the way your university representative treated you during decision making. _____28. Your university representative probably trea ted you worse than ot her students because of your personal characteristics. _____29. You could have had the decision reconsidered.
59 59 Now, we would like you to focus on the OUTCOME of the situation you listed above. 1 2 3 4 Strongly Disagree Mainly Dis agree Mainly Agree Strongly Agree _____30. The decision was based on meeting your needs. _____31. All in all, the deci sion was fair to you. _____32. Overall, you were very satisfied with the decision. _____33. The decision was very favorable to you. _____34. The decision was influenced by the amount you contribute to your university. _____35. The decision was based on tr eating all students equally. _____36. Your needs were not met. _____37. Regardless of effort or input, the outc ome here was based on meeting your needs.
60 APPENDIX C THE MULTIGROUP ETHNIC ID ENTITY MEASURE (MEIM) In this country, people come fr om many different countries a nd cultures, and there are many different words to describe the di fferent backgrounds or ethnic groups that people come from. Some examples of the various names of ethnic groups are Hispanic or Latino, African, Black or African American, Asian, Asian Am erican, Chinese, Filipino, Ja panese, Indian, South Korean, Taiwanese, American Indian, Mexican, Latin American, European American, Caucasian or White, Irish, German, Greek, Nort hern Italian and many others. These questions are about your ethnicity or your ethnic group and how you feel about it or react to it. Please fill in: In terms of ethnic group, I consider myself to be ___________________________ My father's ethnicity is ______________________________ My mother's ethnicity is ______________________________ Use the numbers below to indicate how much you agree or disagree with each statement. (1) Strongly disagree (2) Disagree (3) Agree (4) Strongly agree _____ 1I have spent time trying to find out more about my ethnic group, such as its history, traditions, and customs. _____ 2I am active in organizations or so cial groups that include mostly members of my own ethnic group. _____ 3I have a clear sense of my et hnic background and what it means for me. _____ 4I think a lot about how my life will be affected by my ethnic group membership. _____ 5I am happy that I am a member of the group I belong to. _____ 6I have a strong sense of belonging to my own ethnic group. _____ 7I understand pretty well what my ethnic group membership means to me. _____ 8In order to learn more about my ethnic background, I have often talked to other people about my ethnic group. _____ 9I have a lot of pride in my ethnic group. _____ 10I participate in cultural practices of my own group, such as special food, music, or customs. _____ 11I feel a strong attachment towards my own ethnic group. _____ 12I feel good about my cu ltural or ethnic background.
61 APPENDIX D SCOCIOCULTURAL ADAPTATION SCALE (SCAS) Sociocultural Adaptation Scale Please indicate how much difficu lty you experience in the United St ates of America in each of these areas. Use the following 1 to 5 scale. no difficulty slight difficulty moderate difficulty great diffic ulty extreme difficulty 1 2 3 4 5 _____1. Making friends. _____2. Finding food that you enjoy _____3. Following rules and regulations. _____4. Dealing with people in authority. _____5. Taking an American perspective on the culture. _____6. Using the transport system. _____7. Dealing with bureaucracy (a dministrative systems, government, official procedures). _____8. Understanding American value system. _____9. Making yourself understood. _____10. Seeing things from an Am ericans point of view. _____11. Going shopping. _____12. Dealing with someone who is unpleasant. _____13. Understanding Ameri can jokes and humor. _____14. Adapting to local accommodation. _____15. Going to social gatherings. _____16. Dealing with people staring at you. _____17. Communicating with people of a different ethnic group. _____18. Understanding ethnic or cultural differences.
62 no difficulty slight difficulty moderate difficulty great diffic ulty extreme difficulty 1 2 3 4 5 _____19. Dealing with unsatisfactory service. _____20. Worshipping (White not app licable if you do not worship). _____21. Relating to individuals that you are attracted to. _____22. Finding your way around. _____23. Understanding Ameri can political system. _____24. Talking about yourself with others. _____25. Dealing with the climate. _____26. Understanding Americans world view. _____27. Family relationships. _____28. The pace of life. _____29. Being able to see two sides of an inter-cultural issue. _____30. Understanding the local accent/language. _____31. Living away from family members ove rseas/independently from your parents. _____32. Adapting to local etique tte (manners, customs). _____33. Understanding what is re quired of you at university. _____34. Coping with academic work. _____35. Dealing with staff at the university. _____36. Expressing your ideas in class.
63 APPENDIX E INSTITUTION REVIEW BOARD DOCUMENTS 1. TITLE OF PROTOCOL: Effects of Perceived Justice, Et hnic Identity, Acculturation on Inte rnational Students Social and Psychological Adjustment 2. PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR(s): (Name, degree, title, dept ., address, phone #, e-mail & fax) Tong-An Shueh, M. S./Ed. S. Counseling Psychology Graduate Student Department of Psychology P.O. Box 112250 Gainesville, FL 32611-2250 (352) 392-0601 ext. 211 (352) 871-6158 TongAn.Shueh@gmail.com 3. SUPERVISOR (IF PI IS STUDENT): (Name, campus address, phone #, e-mail & fax) Dr. Kenneth G. Rice P.O. Box 112250 Gainesville, FL 32611-2250 (352) 392-0601 ext. 246 firstname.lastname@example.org 4. DATES OF PROP OSED PROTOCOL: From _date of approval_ To 8/31/2007 5. SOURCE OF FUNDING FOR THE PROTOCOL: (As indicated to the Office of Researc h, Technology and Graduate Education) None 6. SCIENTIFIC PURPOSE OF THE INVESTIGATION: The purpose of this study is to understand how in ternational students pe rceived justice, ethnic identity, and acculturation influence their social and psychological adaptation here in the United States. 7. DESCRIBE THE RESE ARCH METHODOLOGY IN NON-TECHNICAL LANGUAGE. The UFIRB needs to know what will be done with or to the research participant(s). Participants will be asked to complete an onlin e survey about their pe rceived justice, ethnic identity level, and sociocultural adaptation. M easures of depression, satisfaction with life, acculturation, and demographic questions related to language fluency, future residence plan, and counseling experiences will also be included in the survey.
64 8. POTENTIAL BENEFITS AND ANTICIPATED RISK. (If risk of physical, psychological or economic harm may be involved, describe the steps taken to pr otect participant.) There are no anticipated risks and although some of the questi ons on the survey are of a personal nature, all responses will be confidential. The da ta will be stored in a file protected by a password which will only be known by the resear chers. There is no compensation or direct benefit to the participants for participating in this study. The study results will be very helpful for the universities to improve their services and policies on international students. 9. DESCRIBE HOW PARTICIPANT(S) WI LL BE RECRUITED, THE NUMBER AND AGE OF THE PARTICIPANTS, AND PROPOSED COMPENSATION (if any): Three hundred international students at the University of Fl orida who are 18 years or older will be recruited to participate in th is study. The invitation will be se nt out through an email with the website link to the online survey. This email w ill be distributed through international student associations email listservs, international friends hip organizations email listservs, the university international centers listserv for international st udents, and possibly the email listservs of some UF departments and programs, et hnic church organizations, and ot her UF international student related associations in which th ere are many UF international stude nts. The same invitation letter shown in the Template for the Invitation Ema il will also be posted on the above mentioned organizations websites and/or other UF international student related websites. 10. DESCRIBE THE INFORMED CONSENT PR OCESS. INCLUDE A COPY OF THE INFORMED CONSENT DOCUMENT (if applicable). On the first webpage of the online survey, the pa rticipants will be shown the consent form. It includes information about the project and the resear chers, instructi ons for participating in this study, potential risks and benefits of the study, an d contact information for investigators to answer any questions participants might have about the study. On the bottom of the consent form, the participants will be informed that by clicking on the Press here to start button, they indicate that they have read the consent form and agree to the procedures. The participants cannot proceed into the study unless they click that button, saying that they have read and agree with the informed consent form. All participants will also see a debriefing webpage after they finish the survey questions (e nclosed). Participants can print a copy of the online informed consent and the debriefing webpage s to keep for their records. Please use attachments sparingly. __________________________ Principal Investigator's Signature _________________________ Supervisor's Signature
65 I approve this protocol for submission to the UFIRB: ____________________________ Dept. Chair/Center Director Date
66 Template for the Invitation Email Topic: Survey on Internati onal Students Adjustment Content: Dear Fellow International Students: Do you want to let your voice heard? Please take some time to participate in this online survey. My name is Tong-An Shueh and I am a doc toral Counseling Psyc hology student at the University of Florida. I am conducting a study ab out how various systemic and personal factors might affect international students adjustment in the United States. This study is approved by the IRB office at the University of Florida. Beside the demographic questions in this su rvey, you will answer questions relating to how you feel about university services for internat ional students and how you feel about different cultures and life here in the Un ited States. You will also answer questions about how you feel about yourself under these situations a nd how you adjust to the situations. It takes about thirty minutes to complete th e online survey. Your participation will greatly contribute to our understanding of in ternational students adjustment processes here in the U.S. The study results will be very helpful for the unive rsities to improve thei r services and policies for international students. Your answ ers will be strictly confidential. Please click here to take the online survey. Your opinions a nd feelings are very important! However, if you have already taken this exact online survey before, please do not take it again. (Website address will appear here for the participants to click) If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me through the email, TongAn.Shueh@gmail.com Thank you so much! Sincerely yours, Tong-An Shueh
67 INFORMED CONSENT FORM Please read this consent document carefully be fore you decide to participate in this study. Purpose of the Research Study: This questionnaire explores how international students adju stment might be affected by different systemic and personal factors. What you will be asked to do in the study: In this study, you will answer demographic questi ons that include items related to language fluency, future residence plan, and counseling ex periences, etc. In addition, you will answer questions about how you feel when dealing with university representa tives and how you feel about different cultures and life here in the United States. You will also answer questions about how you feel about yourself under these situations and how you adjust to the situations. There are seven parts of measuremen t in this online survey. Time required: About 30 minutes Risks and Benefits: There is no potential risk for participating in this study. By participating in the research, international students experien ces could be understood more and the results could be used to improve universities services and policies for international st udents. There is no financial compensation for participating in this research. Confidentiality: Your responses in this study will be confidentia l to the extent provided by law. You will be assigned a code number, and your responses will be stored in a computer according to the code number and not by name. As such, your name will not be associated with any responses and will not be used in any report. Mo reover, all data will be anal yzed by group averages and not by individual responses. Voluntary participation & right to withdraw: Your participation in this study is completely voluntary. There is no penalty for not participating. You have the right to withdraw from th e study at any time without consequence. Whom to contact if you have questions about the study: Tong-An Shueh, Department of Psychology, University of Florida, (352) 392-0601 x211, TongAn.Shueh@gmail.com Dr. Kenneth G. Rice, Department of Psychol ogy, University of Fl orida, (352) 392-0601 x246, email@example.com
68 Whom to contact about your rights as a research participant in the study: UFIRB Office, Box 112250, University of Flor ida, Gainesville, FL 32611-2250; ph (352) 3920433, IRB2@ufl.edu Whom to contact about your rights as a research participant in the study: I have read the procedures described above. By clicking on the link below, I voluntarily agree to participate in the study, and I can print this page if I wish to receive a copy of this consent form.
69 You have now completed this online survey. First I would like to thank you for participating in this study. Let me tell you a little bit about the study and some of the things we hope to find. We are conducting this research in an effort to understand more how factors such as perceived justice in the university setti ng, ethnic identity, and acculturation coul d together affect international students social and psychologi cal adjustment. Psychological adjustment was measured with scales for depression and life satisfaction. Demographic characteristics will also be used to help explain the re lationships between variables. We hope to find associations between the above mentioned factors and in ternational students social and psychological adjustment. The results can help us to further understand international students psychological and social adjustment in the university se tting, and the re sults might be useful to universities as they work to provide better services to international students. You can print a copy of this webpage for your refe rence. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact Tong-An Shueh through email, TongAn.Shueh@gmail.com or his supervisor, Dr. Kenneth G. Rice, Departme nt of Psychology through phone, (352) 392-0601 x 246 or email, firstname.lastname@example.org If you have any questions about your rights as a resear ch participant, you can contact the IRB office at UFIRB Office, Box 112250, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-2250 ph, (352) 392-0433, IRB2@ufl.edu In addition, if you want to know the results of the study (what we found), feel free to contact Tong-An Shueh. We should know some of the results by the Spring 2007 semester.
70 Memorandum To: UF IRB 02 CC: Kenneth G. Rice, Ph.D. From: Tong-An (Fred) Shueh Date: 12/12/2006 Re: #2006-U-802, Effects of Perceived Justice, Ethnic Identity Acculturation on International Students Social and Psychological Adjustment Because fewer than expected participants have participated in this study, I am asking for approval to make minor changes in participant recruitment procedures. Basically, we want to enhance our recruitment by distributing paper copies to the potential participants. This revision has also been made because many international student-related websites limit the word number of a post. In order to accommodate some websites word li mitations in postings, a s horter invitation letter will also be used. The short version of the invita tion letter is shown below, titled Template for the Online Invitation letter (Short Version). In addition, participants will be recruited in locations where there are likely to be UF international students, such as during UF internat ional student-related even ts and gatherings. The researcher will either distribute the paper version of the survey, the invitation letter, and the consent form directly to the potential participants or hand th em to a responsible person for distribution. After the participants complete the survey, they c ould return the survey and the consent form to the same person; and they will at the same time receive the debriefing page. The distributed paper copy of the inv itation letter, the informed consent form, and the debriefing form are no different than materials al ready approved for this study, ex cept that we exclude the text regarding the online website because it is irrelevant for this procedure of collecting data. Another minor modification is that the sent ence in the invitation letter used online that rea d, However, if you have already taken this exact online survey before, please do not take it again has been revised to, However, if you have already taken this exact same su rvey before either online or on paper, please do not take it again. Both the inv itation letter and consent form are included with this memo. Thank you so much! Sincerely yours, Tong-An Shueh CONFIDENTIAL
71 Template for the Invitation Letter (Paper Copy) Survey on International Students Adjustment Dear Fellow International Students: Do you want to let your voice heard? Pl ease take some time to participate in this survey. My name is Tong-An Shueh and I am a doc toral Counseling Psyc hology student at the University of Florida. I am conducting a st udy about how various systemic and personal factors might affect international students ad justment in the United States. This study is approved by the IRB office at th e University of Florida. Besides the demographic questions in this survey, you will answer questions relating to how you feel about university services for intern ational students and how you feel about different cultures and life here in the United States. You will also answer questions about how you feel about yourself under these situatio ns and how you adjust to the situations. It takes about thirty minutes to complete the survey. Your partic ipation will greatly contribute to our understanding of international students adjust ment processes here in the U.S. The study results will be very helpful for the universities to impr ove their services and policies for international students. Your answers will be strictly confidential. Your opinions and feelings are very important However, if you have already taken this exact same survey before either online or on paper, please do not take it again. Please return your completed survey and th e inform consent form to the person who distributed the documents to you. If you have an y questions, please feel free to contact me through the email, TongAn.Shueh@gmail.com Thank you so much! Sincerely yours, Tong-An Shueh
72 INFORMED CONSENT FORM Please read this consent document carefully befo re you decide to participate in this study. Purpose of the Research Study: This questionnaire explores how international student s adjustment might be affected by different systemic and personal factors. What you will be asked to do in the study: In this study, you will answer demographic questions that include items rela ted to language fluency, future residence plan, and counseling experiences, et c. In addition, you will answer questions about how you feel when dealing with university representatives and how you feel about different cultures and life here in the United States. You will also answer qu estions about how you feel about yourself under these situations and how you adjust to the situations. Th ere are seven parts of measurement in this online survey. Time required: About 30 minutes Risks and Benefits: There is no potential risk for participating in this study. By participating in the research, international students experiences could be understood more and th e results could be used to improve universities services and policies for international students. There is no financial compensation for participating in this research. Confidentiality: Your responses in this study will be confidential to the extent pr ovided by law. You will be assigned a code number, and your responses will be stored in a computer according to the code number and not by name. As such, your name will not be associ ated with any responses and will not be used in any report. Moreover, all data will be analyzed by group averages and not by individual responses. Voluntary participation & right to withdraw: Your participation in this study is completely vol untary. There is no penalty for not participating. You have the right to withdraw from the study at any time without consequence. Whom to contact if you have questions about the study: Tong-An Shueh, Department of Psychology, University of Florida, (352) 392-0601 x211, TongAn.Shueh@gmail.com Dr. Kenneth G. Rice, Department of Psychology, University of Florida, (352) 392-0601 x246, email@example.com Whom to contact about your rights as a research participant in the study: UFIRB Office, Box 112250, University of Flor ida, Gainesville, FL 32611-2250; ph (352) 392-0433, IRB2@ufl.edu
73 Whom to contact about your rights as a research participant in the study: I have read the procedures described above. I vol untarily agree to participate in the study. Printed Name:________________________Sign:_____________________________Date:________________
74 Template for Debriefing (Paper Copy) You have now completed this su rvey. First I would lik e to thank you for part icipating in this study. Let me tell you a little bit about the study and some of the things we hope to find. We are conducting this research in an effort to understand more how factors such as perceived justice in the university setti ng, ethnic identity, and acculturation coul d together affect international students social and psychologi cal adjustment. Psychological adjustment was measured with scales for depression and life satisfaction. Demographic characteristics will also be used to help explain the re lationships between variables. We hope to find associations between the above mentioned factors and in ternational students social and psychological adjustment. The results can help us to further understand international students psychological and social adjustment in the university se tting, and the re sults might be useful to universities as they work to provide better services to international students. If you have any questions or comments, please f eel free to contact Tong -An Shueh through email, TongAn.Shueh@gmail.com or his supervisor, Dr. Kenneth G. Rice, Department of Psychology through phone, (352) 392-0601 x 246 or email, firstname.lastname@example.org If you have any questions about your rights as a research part icipant, you can contact the I RB office at UFIRB Office, Box 112250, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-2250 ph, (352) 392-0433, IRB2@ufl.edu In addition, if you want to know the results of the study (what we found), feel free to contact Tong-An Shueh. We should know some of the results by the Spring 2007 semester
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78 Reise, S. P., Waller, N. G., & Comrey, A. L. (2000). Factor analysis and scale revision. Psychological Assessment 12 287-297. Roberts, R. E., Phinney, J. S., Masse, L. C., Ch en, Y. R., Roberts, C. R., & Romero, A. (1999). The structure of ethnic identity of young adol escents from diverse ethnocultural groups, The Journal of Early Adolescence 19(3), 301-322. Robinson, J. & Spitze, G. (1992). Whistle while you work? The effect of household task performance on womens and mens well-being. Social Science Quarterly 73, 844-861. Russell, D. W. (2002). In search of underlying dimensions: The use (and abuse) of factor analysis in PSPB. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 28 1629-1646. Sam, D. L. (2000). Psychological adjustment of adolescents with immigrant backgrounds. Journal of Social Psychology 140(1), 5-25. Sam, D. L. (2001). Satisfaction with life am ong international students: An exploratory study. Social Indicators Research 53(3), 315-337. Sano, H. (1990). Research and social difficulties in cross-cultural adjustment: Social situational analysis. Japanese Journal of Behavioral Therapy 16, 37-44. Schmitt, M. T., & Branscombe, N. R. (2002). The meaning and consequences of perceived discrimination in disadvantaged and privileg ed social groups. In W. Stroebe, & M. Hewstone (Eds.), European Review of Social Psychology (Vol. 12, pp. 167-199). Chichester: Wiley. Schmitt, M. T., Spears, R., & Branscombe, N. R. (2003). Constructing a minority group identity out of shared rejection: The case of international students. European Journal of Social Psychology 33, 1-12. Senel, P. (2003). Ethnic identity and psychos ocial adaptation among international students. Psychological Reports 92(2), 512-514. Spencer-Oatey, H., & Xiong, Z. (2006). Chinese students psychological and sociocultural adaptations to Britain: An empirical study. Language, Culture and Curriculum 19(1), 37-53. Sussman, N. M. (2002). Testing the cultural iden tity model of the cultural transition cycle: Sojourners return home. International Journal of Intercultural Relations 26, 391-408. Tabachnick, B. G., & Fidell, L. S. (2006). Using multivariate statistics (5th. Ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson/Allyn & Bacon. Tajfel, H., & Turner, J. C. (1986). The social id entity theory of intergroup behavior. In S. Worchel & W. Austin (Eds.), Psychology of intergroup relations (pp. 33-48). Chicago: Nelson-Hall.
79 Thibaut, J. & Walker, L. (1975). Procedural Justice: A Psychological Analysis Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc. Tyler, T. R. (1991). Using procedures to justify outcomes: Testing the viability of a procedural justice strategy for managing conflict and allocating resources in work organizations. Basic & Applied Social Psychology 12(3), 259-279. Tyler, T. R., & Caine, A. (1981). The influence of outcomes and procedures on satisfaction with formal leaders. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 41, 642-655. Tyler, T. R., & Lind, E. A. (1992). A relational model of authority in groups. In Zanna, M. (Eds.), Advances in Experimental Social Psychology (Vol. 25). New York, NY: Academic Press. Vega, W. A., Gil, A. G., Warheit, G. J ., Zimmerman, R. S., & Apospori, E. (1993). Acculturation and delinquent behavior among Cuban adolescents: Toward an empirical model. American Journal of Community Psychology 21, 113-125. Ward, C. (1996). Acculturation. In D. Landis & R. Bhagat (Eds.) Handbook of intercultural training (2nd ed.) (pp. 124-147). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Ward, C., Bochner, S., & Furnham, A. (2001). The psychology of culture shock (2nd ed.). Philadelphia: Taylor & Francis. Ward, C., Chang, C., Lopez-Nerney, S. (1999). Psychological and Sociocultural adaptation of Filipina domestic workers in Singapore. In J. C. Lasry, J. Adair, & K. Dion (Eds.), Latest contributions to cross-cultural psychology (pp. 118-134). Lisse, Netherlands: Swets and Zeitlinger. Ward, C., & Kennedy, A. (1992). Locus of contro l, mood disturbance, and social difficulty during cross-cultural transitions. International Journal of Intercultural Relations 16, 175-194. Ward, C. & Kennedy, A. (1993a). Acculturation and cross-cultural adaptation of British residents in Hong Kong. Journal of Social Psychology 133, 395-397. Ward, C. & Kennedy, A. (1993b). Wheres the culture in cross-cultural transition? Comparative studies of sojourner adjustment. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology 24(2), 221-249. Ward, C., & Kennedy, A. (1994). Acculturation strategies, psychological adjustment, and sociocultural competence during cross-cultural transitions. International Journal of Intercultural Relations 18, 329-343. Ward, C., & Kennedy, A. (1996a). Crossing cult ures: The relationship between psychological and sociocultural dimensions of cross-cultural adjustment. In J. Pandey, D. Sinha & D. P. S. Bhawuk (Eds.), Asian contributions to cross-cultural psychology (pp. 289-306). New Delhi: Sage.
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81 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Tong-An Shueh was born November 27, 1975 in Taipei, Taiwan. He grew up with his parents, one elder sister and one elder brother. He attended Na tional Central University in TaoYuan, Taiwan and graduated in 1999 with a B.A. in English and American literature along with teacher education program. After graduating, To ng-An taught in middle school as an English teacher and a trainee counselor for 1 year. Tong-An served in the Taiwan Army for 2 years as a counselor officer. In 2002, he came to the United States to study at Indiana University, Bloomington, where he completed his M.S. in community counseling in 2004 and Ed.S. in mental health counseling in 2005. Tong-An joined the counseling psychology program at the University of Florida in Fall 2005. Tong-An will receive his M.S. in psychology in 2007 and will continue to pursue his Ph.D in counseling psychology.