Acculturative stressor and meaning of life as predictors of negative affect in acculturation: A cross-cultural comparative study between Chinese international students in Australia and Hong Kong

Jiayan PAN, Daniel Fu Keung Wong, Lynette Joubert, Cecilia Lai Wan Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: The purpose of the present study was to compare the predictive effects of acculturative stressor and meaning of life on negative affect in the process of acculturation between Chinese international students in Australia and Hong Kong.

Method: Four hundred mainland Chinese students studying at six universities in Hong Kong and 227 Chinese international students studying at the University of Melbourne in Australia completed a questionnaire that included measures of acculturative stressor, meaning of life, negative affect and demographic information.

Results: The Australian sample was found to have a higher level of acculturative stressor and negative affect than the Hong Kong sample. Acculturative stressor had a positive impact on negative affect in both samples, but the impact of different domains of acculturative stressor on negative affect varied between the two groups. Finally, meaning of life partially mediated the relationship between acculturative stressor and negative affect in the Hong Kong sample, but no such effect was found in the Australia sample.

Conclusions: Acculturative stressor is a critical risk factor for negative affect in acculturation for Chinese international students in Australia and Hong Kong. Meaning of life acted as a protective factor that mitigated negative affect for mainland Chinese students in Hong Kong, but not for the Chinese international students in Australia. The theoretical and practical implications for resilience-based and meaning-oriented intervention for Chinese international students are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)740-750
JournalAustralian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry
Volume41
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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