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Adaptation and Coping among East African Immigrants in North America 

Gooreka Okahaabwa, PsyD., - (Uganda Christian University)

Abstract

Immigrants are faced with the challenge of adapting to a culture different from their own. Successful adaptation includes socio-cultural adaptation, psychological adjustment, and coping.  This study investigated cross-cultural adaptation and coping among East African immigrants in North America. Participants in this study were 51 individuals of East African origin who were over 20 years of age, residing in North America and recruited through a snowballing procedure. Participants completed the Acculturation Index, Socio-Cultural Adaptation Scale, and Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale, Ways of Coping Checklist (Revised), and a demographic questionnaire using Survey Monkey. Data analysis utilized SPSS. Independent-samples-t- tests and Pearson product-moment correlations were conducted. Results indicated that there was no statistically significant difference in socio-cultural adaptation by: acculturation, coping, and migration with family. Additionally, there was no statistically significant difference in psychological adjustment by acculturation and participation in a faith community. Results revealed a positive correlation between psychological adjustment and socio-cultural adaptation, and a statistically significant difference in socio-cultural adaptation by participation in faith community. Further research into adaptation and coping among East African immigrants is recommended.


Key words: acculturation, adaptation, coping, immigration, East Africans, adjustment

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