Sociocultural Influences on Psychological Processes

Considerable research is documenting how sociocultural factors influence psychological processes in important ways. Much of our attention has focused on depression among low-income, urban minority children among whom some research is documenting lower-than-expected rates of depression given the increased risk for experiencing negative life events. More recently, we have been collaborating with Dr. Wendy Grolnick to examine the sociocultural influences on one dimension of parenting behavior: the provision of structure. This research has been funded by NARSAD and the William T. Grant Foundation.

A qualitative exploration of the relationship between functional impairment and mental health in Chiapas, Mexico. 
(PI: Hartman) [In Progress]
This exploratory study will examine how individuals in rural Chiapas, Mexico understand functional impairment, mental health (anxiety and depression) and the relationship between the two, in the hopes of shedding light on these constructs outside of the dominant, “Western” paradigm. Interviews were conducted in a community in rural Chiapas in summer, 2019 in collaboration with Partners In Health Mexico. The project is currently in the analysis phase. 

Minority stress and coping among sexual diverse Latinxs 
(PI: Noyola) [Completed Project]
This qualitative study investigated minority stress and coping processes among a community sample of sexual diverse Latinxs (i.e., lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, and queer). Using an intersectional analytic framework, we attended to the intersection of heterosexism, racism, and sexism, as well as Latinx cultural values of familismo, marianismo, machismo, and colectivismo. We have published one paper from this project.

The Immigrant Health Paradox: The role of religiosity
(PI: Moreno) [Completed Project]
Using both quantitative methods (reanalysis of NLAAS dataset) and qualitative interview methods, we investigated the role of religiosity in the finding that first-generation Mexican immigrants have lower rates of mental and substance use disorders than subsequent generations. We have published two papers from this project under review, and we currently have a third one under review.

Parental structure in families of adolescents
(PIs: Grolnick & Cardemil) [Completed Project]
This project sought to delineate the way parents provide structure to their children in three different domains of life: academics, unsupervised time and responsibilities. 100 European American and 100 Latino mothers and their children participated in an interview and self-report study designed to assess how families implement structure in their cultural and ecological contexts. We published two papers form this project.

Emotional expressivity and adjustment in urban, adolescent males
(PI: Pollastri) [Completed Project]
Using a multi-method (videotaped interactions, questionnaires, interviews), multi-informant approach (self-report, peer report, observational coding), this study explored the relationship between emotional expressivity and social-emotional adjustment in a sample of 183 late adolescent males living in a low-income, urban environment. Results generally indicated that urban boys who exhibit low emotionally expressivity can be protected from poor socio-emotional outcomes as long as they exhibit flexibility to express vulnerable emotion when in a safe context; i.e., when they are disclosing to trusted friends. We published one paper from this project.