Theses Doctoral

The Impact of Ethnic Identity on Attitudes Towards Counseling for Italian-Americans

Dorazio, Cristina

Italian-Americans constitute 6% of the American population (Census, 2010). Although they are part of the White majority, they have a unique cultural experience, as they endorse ethnic values that differ from other White Americans. It has been noted that adherence to these values may impact the way Italian-Americans view mental health treatment. In an attempt to understand this dynamic, the present study investigated the impact of ethnic identity, acculturation, aspects of socioeconomic status, and collective self esteem on attitudes towards counseling for a sample of 242 self-identified Italian-Americans. It was hypothesized that acculturation would mediate the relationship between ethnic identity, collective self-esteem, and attitudes towards counseling. It was also hypothesized that aspects of socioeconomic status would moderate the relationship between ethnic identity and collective self-esteem and attitudes towards counseling. Hierarchical multiple regressions were conducted to test these hypothesized models; however, findings were not significant. Preliminary analysis revealed that age and gender were significantly predictive of attitudes towards counseling. Furthermore, exploratory analysis revealed a significant positive relationship between public collective self-esteem and aspects of socioeconomic status to attitudes towards counseling for this sample. These findings have implications for training, research, and practice for mental health professionals.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Counseling Psychology
Thesis Advisors
Smith, Laura
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
September 27, 2013