Date of Award

2008

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts Honours

School

School of Psychology and Social Sciences

Faculty

Faculty of Computing, Health and Science

First Advisor

Dr Justine Dandy

Abstract

This review examines the relationships among coping strategies, social support, and migrant adjustment. Research suggests that due to losses of the homeland, such as loss of family, friends and community, and adjustment difficulties in the new country, migration can be a difficult experience. Several key findings in the literature however, revealed that particular coping strategies and social support are two key factors that can ameliorate the negative effects of migration. Research has typically found an association between coping strategies and psychological outcomes, such that, problem-focused or active coping strategies, whereby migrants take direct action to solve the problem, are typically associated with better psychological outcomes. Social support has also been found to predict better psychological outcomes. Several limitations were also evident in the literature which included both methodological and measurement issues. The most prominent limitation is that the majority of the research has been conducted among non-English speaking background (NESB) immigrants that have relocated to an English speaking background (ESB) country, whilst there is a paucity of research on the stress-coping/social support relationship among ESB migrants who have relocated to an ESB country. Therefore, further research is required to determine the moderating effects of coping strategies and social support within these immigrant populations. This research aimed to examine the relationships among coping strategies, social support and psychological outcomes among a sample of 98 British migrants who had settled in Perth, Western Australia. A cross-sectional survey design was used with a self-report methodology. The COPE scale was utilised to measure coping strategies, whilst the Profile of Mood States and Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale assessed depressed/negative moo6' and depression, respectively. Participants were recruited through volunteer sampling and snowball sampling. Correlational analyses and hierarchical multiple regression analyses were conducted to investigate statistical relations between coping styles and psychological outcomes. Consistent with previous research, the findings revealed that the avoidant coping strategy of denial was a significant predictor of depression and depressed mood. Contrary to the literature active coping and social support were not found to predict either depression or depressed mood. Limitations of the study are considered, and avenues for future research are suggested.

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