Recent years have witnessed a significant growth in the Russian-speaking community in Montreal, Canada. However, little is currently known about the predictors of psychological adjustment in immigrants from the Former Soviet Union (FSU). In this study we explored the expectations that this group of immigrants (N = 271) hoped to fulfill in their adopted society, the extent to which these expectations have been fulfilled, and the impact of fulfilled expectations on psychological adjustment. We found that the degree of fulfilled expectations was significantly associated with better psychological adjustment independent of personality traits, language proficiency, and acculturation. These findings contribute to the literature on cross-cultural adaptation of immigrants from the FSU and highlight the potential importance of expectations for the study of acculturation more generally.
This study examines the acculturation, experiences of discrimination and wellbeing of a representative sample of over 3000 adult second generation of immigrants in Canada; 43% were born in Canada, while 57% immigrated before the age of 12 years. Four acculturation proﬁles werecreatedusingtwosenseofbelonging questions: those whohavestrongsenseofbelonging to both Canada and own ethnic group (integrated); those who have a strong sense of belonging to Canada only (assimilated); those who have strong sense of belonging to own ethnic group only (separated); and those who have weak sense of belonging to both Canada or own ethnic group (marginalised). In the study sample, 75% areinthe integration group, 15%inassimilation, 6% in separation, and 5% in marginalization. Wellbeing is assessed with two questions about life satisfaction and self-rated mental health. Those in the integration group have a signiﬁcantly higher level on both measures of wellbeing. The experience of discrimination is signiﬁcantly associated with being in the separation group. The eﬀect of discrimination on wellbeing varied by acculturation proﬁle: marginalization ampliﬁes the eﬀect of discrimination, while assimilation mitigates it. Social and demographic factors also aﬀect wellbeing, particularly having low levels of education, income and employment. Implications for the settlement process are suggested.
Employing a person-oriented approach to acculturation expectations held by Russian majority group members, we investigated the presence of groups of profiles and relationships between acculturation expectation profiles and intergroup attitudes. Applying latent profile analysis, we found three easy-to-interpret acculturation expectation profiles: biculturalism expectations, alternate-biculturalism expectations (with public—private domain differences in preference), and assimilation expectations. The subsequent comparative analysis showed that these profiles mainly differed in the extent of the desirability of maintenance of heritage culture, and adoption of the mainstream culture by immigrants only in private domains of life. The biculturalism expectation profile contained individuals who support the idea of a multicultural society. The alternate-biculturalism expectation profile contained individuals with slightly less emphasis on adoption of mainstream acculturation for immigrants, a distinction between preferences in the public and private domains of life, more focus on public domains, and less right-wing authoritarianism. The assimilation expectation profile contained individuals with a higher dangerous worldview and endorsement of discrimination, and lower support of a multicultural ideology, willingness to engage in intergroup contact, and desire of maintenance of heritage acculturation for immigrants. Our study demonstrated the value of a person-oriented approach in a population where subgroups differ in the domain dependence of their acculturation expectations.
Employing a person-oriented approach to acculturation expectations held by Russian majority group members, we investigated the presence of groups of proﬁles and relationships between acculturation expectation proﬁles and intergroup attitudes. Applying latent proﬁle analysis, we found three easy-to-interpret acculturation expectation proﬁles: biculturalism expectations, alternate-biculturalism expectations (with public—private domain diﬀerences in preference), and assimilation expectations. The subsequent comparative analysis showed that these proﬁles mainly diﬀered in the extent of the desirability of maintenance of heritage culture, and adoption of the mainstream culture by immigrants only in private domains of life. The biculturalism expectation proﬁle contained individuals who support the idea of a multicultural society. The alternate-biculturalism expectation proﬁle contained individuals with slightly less emphasis on adoption of mainstream acculturation for immigrants, a distinction between preferences in the public and private domains of life, more focus on public domains, and less right-wing authoritarianism. The assimilation expectation proﬁle contained individuals with a higher dangerous worldview and endorsement of discrimination, and lower support of a multicultural ideology, willingness to engage in intergroup contact, and desire of maintenance of heritage acculturation for immigrants. Our study demonstrated the value of a person-oriented approach in a population where subgroups diﬀer in the domain dependence of their acculturation expectations.
The current pilot study investigated the psychological mechanisms behind ethnic outgroup aggression, a significant outcome of intergroup conflicts. While previous research suggested several impactful predictors of ethnic outgroup aggression, such as intergroup contact and nationalism, no attempt has been made to synthesize all these constructs into a single cross-cultural study. Building on existing research, this pilot study is the first to assess a refined framework where we tested a proposed mediation model according to nationalism and emotion regulation mediate the relationship between intergroup contact, susceptibility to persuasion, and intergroup anxiety on the one hand and ethnic outgroup aggression on the other hand within a cross-cultural sample. An online questionnaire was distributed using convenience sampling among 2482 students with an ethnic majority background living and studying in ten (European) countries. Multigroup path analysis supported the larger part of the hypothesized model where we found that emotion regulation partially mediated the relationship between susceptibility to persuasion as a predictor and aggression as an outcome. As expected, we found that the higher the susceptibility to persuasion, the higher the emotion regulation, and the higher the regulation, the lower the aggression in all countries. Our pilot study provided preliminary evidence that emotion regulation, nationalism and susceptibility to persuasion are critical for the understanding of ethnic outgroup aggression in ethnically diverse societies. Future research needs to be carried out focusing on the development of an intergroup anxiety assessment in which possible gender differences in assessed constructs are considered.
This study examines intercultural relations in post-Soviet Russia. Russia currently has the world’s second highest number of immigrants with most migrants coming from the former Soviet Union, mainly the Central Asian and South Caucasian states. The research was carried out in Moscow, which is the most attractive destination for these immigrants. The paper presents the findings of an empirical study with migrants (N= 378) and residents of Moscow (N= 651) examining their intercultural relations, including their acceptance of multicultural ideology, intercultural contacts, intercultural strategies and mutual adaptation. The study was guided by three general hypotheses: the integration, the multicultural and the contact hypotheses. Data processing was carried out using path analysis, separately for migrants and Muscovites. For both samples, multicultural ideology predicts the strategy of integration positively, and of assimilation negatively. Intercultural contacts predict both acculturation strategies positively for migrants, but not for Muscovites. For migrants, both strategies positively predict life satisfaction, and integration predicts better sociocultural adaptation. For Muscovites, integration predicts life satisfaction. These specific findings fully support the two underlying hypotheses: integration and multicultural for both groups and contact hypothesis only for migrants. Multicultural ideology has positive relation to intercultural contacts of Muscovites and has indirect positive impact on intercultural strategies of migrants. Models demonstrated similar as well as different psychological processes underlying mutual acculturation and intercultural relations in the two groups. The similarities suggest that efforts should be directed at developing a multicultural ideology and facilitating intercultural contacts between migrants and members of the larger society.
Study abroad programs are becoming increasingly popular, yet leaving home to live in a foreign country can be very stressful. We tested the idea that self-determined motivation to study abroad can prevent students from experiencing culture shock and support their subjective well-being, using a sample of 131 international students studying in the United States. After controlling for demographic variables, personality traits, length of stay in the United States, and external difficulties (e.g., language), self-determined study abroad motivation was associated with lower culture shock and greater contextual subjective well-being. Furthermore, basic psychological needs satisfaction fully mediated these relationships. The present study shows that international students’ motivation influences their acculturation, by helping them to meet their own needs in the new context. Theoretical and practical implications, as well as study limitations, are discussed.
We studied the interplay of intercultural competence, intercultural experiences, and creativity among Russian students from Moscow (N = 272). We expected the students from culturally diverse groups, attending the courses on cultural issues, to be more creative. We based our expectation on the idea that cultural diversity and cultural learning are associated with a higher level of intercultural competence that might contribute to students’ creativity. We measured the intercultural experiences by cultural diversity of study groups (a number of foreign students in the groups and the intensity of friendly contacts with them) and by cultural learning (a number of culture-related courses that students attended). We measured creativity by the “Many Instances Game” from the Runco Creativity Assessment Battery (rCAB). We measured intercultural competence by the adapted scale of Fantini and Tirmizi. We discovered positive associations of intercultural experiences in the university with students’ creativity. Such components of intercultural competence as attitudes and skills (the adaptability of behavior), played an important role in the students’ creativity. The attitudes were positive and the skills were negative, related to the creativity. We also revealed that these two components of intercultural competence mediated the relationship between the intercultural experiences and creativity of students. Based on the results, we discussed the factors of the educational environment which may enhance or prohibit creativity.
We investigated the acculturation process of international students (N=319, 162 female) from 62 countries who were residing in the Netherlands, using the acculturation framework by Arends-Tóth and Van de Vijver (2007).We applied SEM to test the model that acculturation conditions (perceived cultural distance [PCD], personal growth initiative [PGI], proficiency in English and the host language, and length of residence) in conjunction with acculturation orientations as mediators (host, heritage, expatriate) predict psychological adjustment as acculturation outcome (acculturative stress, satisfaction with life, mental health problems). We found direct and indirect effects of acculturation conditions on adjustment; high PGI,high English and Dutch proficiencies, and low PCD were associated with better adjustment. Host orientation (predicted by high PGI, Dutch proficiency, and low PCD) was positively associated with adjustment. Heritage orientation (predicted by low English proficiency) was negatively associated with adjustment. As a novel aspect, we included expatriate orientation - an orientation towards other expatriates in the host community. Expatriate orientation was predicted by low Dutch proficiency and was positively associated with adjustment. We also observed direct links between acculturation conditions and outcomes: positive associations between PCD and acculturative stress and between length of residence and acculturative stress; and negative associations between PGI and mental health problems and between English proficiency and acculturative stress. We provide evidence that including expatriate orientation is relevant among international students: It is stronger than both host and heritage orientations, there by underlining the importance of studying acculturation in a contextualized way.
The Vancouver Index of Acculturation (VIA) is a self-report bidimensional instrument that has been employed in several cultural contexts to assess migrants’ orientations toward mainstream and heritage traditions. Although it has shown good reliability and validity in the past, recent theoretical developments and empirical studies have suggested the VIA might assess more than two dimensions. Moreover, measurement invariance of this instrument across demographic subgroups has never been assessed before. With the aim of evaluating these psychometric issues, exploratory factor analysis and Rasch modeling were conducted on data from two samples of immigrants to Canada (N = 224) and to Italy (N = 266). Results supported the hypothesized two-factor structure, with Rasch modeling showing that items within a subscale differed in terms of “difficulty” in being endorsed, but still belonged to a single factor. Differential item functioning analysis results showed measurement invariance across gender, age and education subgroups. Most results converged across the two samples.