This study brings attention to the growing body of literature examining the role of culture and context in the study of generation-status differences in cross-cultural coping and physical well-being among immigrants to the United States. Prior literature on the unique challenges, stressors, coping strategies, and health outcomes for immigrants provides a basis for hypothesized generation status differences on cross-cultural coping (collectivistic, avoidance, and engagement) and physical well-being (health, safety, and environmental). A sample of 118 male and female first, 1.5, and second-generation immigrants of non-European backgrounds, between the ages of 18 and 35, were recruited from the local community to complete an online questionnaire. Results from the cross-sectional study did not yield support for the hypothesized generational status differences. However, exploratory analyses yielded several significant correlations including a positive relationship between collective coping and the safety dimension of physical well-being. Within-generation exploratory analyses yielded several significant correlations and differences on measures of coping strategies and physical well-being for demographic/contextual factors such as religiosity, age, SES, English fluency, connection to the U.S. culture, education, and ethnicity amongst the 1.5 and second-generation immigrants. The empirical investigation of cross-cultural dimensions of coping and physical well-being among immigrants represents a new direction for research. This study also has potential implications for more nuanced understandings of the immigrant paradox, the socioecological perspective of acculturation, collective coping, and inclusion of both objective and subjective experiences of the environment. Implications for theory and practice, methodological limitations, and suggestions for future research are also discussed.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (PsyD) -- Psychology; Immigrants -- United States -- Psychology; Well-being -- Cross-cultural studies; Adjustment (Psychology) -- Cross-cultural studies

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Harrell, Shelly P.;