The Moderating Role of Ethnicity in the Relation Between Religiousness and Mental Health Among Ethnically Diverse College Students

Kevin Cokley, Daniel Garcia, Brittany Hall-Clark, Kimberly Tran, Azucena Rangel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Many studies have documented the links between dimensions of religiousness with mental health (e. g., Hackney and Sanders 2003; Mofidi et al. 2006). However, very little is known about whether these links differ across ethnic groups. This study examined the contribution of dimensions of religiousness to the prediction of mental health in an ethnically diverse sample of 413 college students (167 European Americans, 83 African Americans, 81 Asian Americans, and 82 Latino Americans). Results indicated significant ethnic differences across dimensions of religiousness. African Americans were significantly higher on religious engagement and religious conservatism than the other ethnic groups and significantly lower on religious struggle than European Americans. Moderated multiple regressions revealed that increases in religious struggle was associated with poorer mental health for African Americans and Latino Americans, while increases in religious engagement and ecumenical worldview were associated with better mental health for African Americans. The findings indicate that ethnicity is an important factor to consider when examining the link between religiousness and mental health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)890-907
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Religion and Health
Volume51
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Ethnicity
  • Mental health
  • Religiousness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Religious studies

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