A comparison between American and Chinese college students on suicide-related behavior parameters

Bob LEW, Augustine OSMAN, Jenny Mei Yiu HUEN, Ching Sin SIAU, Mansor ABU TALIB, Cunxian JIA, Caryn Mei Hsien CHAN, Nga Man LEUNG

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31 Citations (Scopus)


Background/Objective: The United States (US) and China are the two largest economies, but recent and directly comparable studies on suicide-related behaviors in the two countries are lacking. By using the Suicidal Behaviors Questionnaire-Revised (SBQ-R), item-level comparison was performed in assessing self-reported suicide-related behaviors between the US and Chinese undergraduates.

Method: This study involved a total of 3,185 college students aged between 18 to 24 years (1,185 US college students, and 2,000 Chinese students who were randomly selected from a large sample of 11,806 Chinese college students). Participants filled out the 4-item SBQ-R.

Results: Participants’ responses were compared by country and sex. There was a higher overall risk of suicide-related behaviors among US students (24.3%) compared to Chinese students (17.0%). US students also reported higher lifetime attempt, past-year ideation, and lifetime threat. US female college students reported the highest suicide-related behaviors compared to other sub-groups.

Conclusions: There is a need to tailor specific interventions to alleviate college students’ suicide-related behaviors in the US and China, with a particular focus on US females. Copyright © 2020 Published by Elsevier España, S.L.U. on behalf of Asociación Española de Psicología Conductual.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-117
JournalInternational Journal of Clinical and Health Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 2020


Lew, B., Osman, A., Huen, J. M. Y., Siau, C. S., Abu Talib, M., Jia, C., . . . Leung, A. N. M. (2020). A comparison between American and Chinese college students on suicide-related behavior parameters. International Journal of Clinical and Health Psychology, 20(2), 108-117. doi: 10.1016/j.ijchp.2020.03.005


  • The Suicidal Behaviors Questionnaire-Revised
  • College students
  • Suicide-related behavior
  • Ex post facto study
  • Suicidal Behaviors Questionnaire-Revised
  • Estudiantes universitarios
  • Conductas relacionadas con el suicidio
  • Estudio ex post facto
  • Alt. title: Comparación entre estudiantes universitarios estadounidenses y chinos en parámetros de comportamiento relacionados con el suicidio


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