Date of Submission
Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)
Robert A DiTomasso, PhD, ABPP, Chair, Department of Psychology
Takako Suzuki, PhD, Chairperson
Petra Kottsieper, PhD
Lilian Odera, PhD
This study explored the relationship between help-seeking attitudes and behaviors, acculturative stress, social connectedness, and length of stay of African international students in the US. A web-based survey was sent to approximately 300 school officials and individuals from various colleges and universities. Forty-eight African international students met criteria and completed the study. Measures utilized in the survey assessed for social connection, acculturative stress, and attitudes towards seeking help for psychological concerns. Help-seeking behaviors were assessed in the demographic questionnaire. Results indicated that higher levels of social connectedness were associated with positive mental health help-seeking attitudes. Among students who reported experiencing mental and physical health concerns, no relationship was found between social connectedness and help-seeking behaviors. Further analyses found no relationship between acculturative stress and mental health help-seeking attitudes and help-seeking behaviors in students who reported having experienced mental and physical health concerns. Similarly, no relationship was found between length of stay and mental health help-seeking attitudes and behaviors of African students in this study. These findings indicate that although some African students may have positive attitudes towards seeking help for mental and physical health concerns, they do not behaviorally engage in help seeking for those concerns. Various barriers may, therefore, be in play and may prevent help seeking behaviors in this population group. Furthermore, increase in acculturative stress and longer length of stay does indicate more positive attitudes or behaviors towards help seeking for African students in the US. Further studies into barriers relating specifically to this population group are warranted.
Chebbet, Daisy, "Help-seeking Attitudes and Behaviors of African International Students: Examining the Relationship between Social Connectedness, Acculturative Stress, and Length of Stay" (2012). PCOM Psychology Dissertations. 243.