Title

Effects of acculturation on attitudes toward seeking counseling among Haitians

Date of Completion

January 2001

Keywords

Education, Guidance and Counseling|Sociology, Ethnic and Racial Studies

Degree

Ph.D.

Abstract

The present study examined acculturation and its impact on Haitian immigrants' attitudes toward seeking professional counseling services. During the process of acculturation, just as with any other immigrant population, Haitians encounter adjustment difficulties such as adaptation issues and psychosocial problems (Portes & Rumbaut, 1990; Portes & Stepick, 1986). ^ Counseling has been linked to successful acculturation. Researchers have found that counseling helps to alleviate some of the stressors experienced by immigrants during the acculturation process (Atkinson, Lowe & Matthews, 1995; LaFromboise & Plake, 1992, Pomales & Williams, 1989). ^ The sample consisted of 92 Haitian immigrants from the greater Boston area who completed a survey packet which consisted of the American-International Relations Survey, the Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale, and a Demographic Questionnaire. ^ The research questions focused on: (1) The effects of acculturation on attitudes toward seeking counseling; (2) The relationship among the three subscale scores of the acculturation instrument and attitudes toward seeking professional counseling; And (3) the effects of the demographic variables on acculturation and attitudes toward seeking counseling. ^ The data were analyzed through the application of Multiple Regression Analysis. The results revealed the following findings: (1) Acculturation is not a predictor of attitudes toward seeking counseling; (2) No relationship exists among the three subscale scores of acculturation and attitudes toward seeking counseling; And (3) Demographic variables did not have an effect on attitudes toward seeking counseling. However, with respect to acculturation, Haitian males and older Haitian immigrants were more inclined to feel acculturated. But, this did not correlate to a positive attitude toward seeking counseling. In addition, those with high language proficiency did not have a positive attitude toward seeking counseling. ^