Acculturative stress and depressive symptoms: Mediating role of emotion dysregulation

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Acculturative stress is associated with a myriad of mental health outcomes including greater feelings of loss, anxiety, and depression. Although past research had repeatedly demonstrated the relation between acculturative stress and mental health, our understanding of why and how acculturation contributes to minorities’ mental health remains limited. In this longitudinal study, we examined emotion dysregulation as a mediator between acculturative stress and depressive symptoms in a sample of Mainland Chinese female university students residing in Hong Kong. A total of 154 students participated for three times in a year, with each time point spanning 4 months apart. At each time point, participants completed a questionnaire concerning their acculturative stress, emotion regulation difficulties, and depressive symptoms. After controlling for age, findings based on path analysis and bootstrapping in an autoregressive model revealed that emotion dysregulation mediated between acculturative stress and depressive symptoms. Through a process-oriented approach, we established the directionality of effects from acculturative stress to depressive symptoms. The present study advanced the literature through a rigorous test of longitudinal process. These findings inform clinicians and practitioners the importance of strengthening female university students’ emotion regulation skills, such that the impact of acculturative stress on depression can be alleviated. Copyright © 2019 SPSSI 2019 Summer Conference.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019


Cheung, R. Y. M., Bhowmik, M. K., & Hue, M. T. (2019, June). Acculturative stress and depressive symptoms: Mediating role of emotion dysregulation. Paper presented at the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues 2019 Summer Conference (SPSSI 2019): Fighting injustice: The power of research, policy, and activism in challenging times, Wyndham San Diego Bayside, San Diego, CA, USA.


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