Despite the detailed history of racism in the United States and the centuries that have passed since slavery and the genocide of native communities, many ethnic populations continue to suffer the impact of racism. As racism persists in the modern era of American life, one must wonder how emerging adults are dealing with racism; especially college students. Therefore, it is important to describe the role played by racial discrimination, especially in the way individuals interact with those who are similar or different from them. The purpose of this study was to compare the perceptions of racial discrimination among all ethnic group members and to investigate if these perceptions had an impact on student’s mental health and academic factors. Participants comprised a sample of convenience consisting of 109 college students (i.e. 80 females and 29 males) enrolled in a private university in southeastern United States. Data was collected on perceived racial discrimination, ethnicity, gender, ethnic identity, mental health, internalized racism, academic achievement, and academic self-concept using the Reybana Life Experience Scale (R-LES). Results indicated that the more one identifies with their ethnicity the less one experiences perceived racial discrimination, less internalization of racism, and poorer mental health. This relationship was statistically significant indicating that ethnic identity has a meaningful relationship with perceived racial discrimination, internalized racism, and mental health. The remaining questions of this study showed that there is a need for more research with larger samples, more ethnic group variation, and better survey design. Keywords: perceived racial discrimination, internalized racism, academic self-concept, academic achievement, ethnicity, ethnic identity, mental health, R-LES
"The Impact of Race and Identity on College Student’s Mental Health and Academic Self-Concept: Understanding the Interrelationship Between Ethnic Identity and Perceived Racial Discrimination,"
Journal of Interdisciplinary Graduate Research: Vol. 4
, Article 4.
Available at: https://knowledge.e.southern.edu/jigr/vol4/iss1/4