Award Date

12-2011

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Psychology

First Committee Member

Christopher Kearney, Chair

Second Committee Member

Laurel Pritchard

Third Committee Member

Cortney Warren

Graduate Faculty Representative

Margaret Oakes

Number of Pages

162

Abstract

Maltreated children are at greater risk of developing PTSD than nonmaltreated children (Ackerman et al., 1998; Epstein et al., 1997; Famularo et al., 1996; Kilpatrick et al., 2003; Widom, 1999). This study sought to assess the role of ethnicity, ethnic identity, and family support on the effects of maltreatment and trauma in adolescents. Participants (n=145) included adolescents from Child Haven, a Department of Family Services (DFS)-related site in Las Vegas, and youths in foster care assessed at the offices of Dr. Stephanie Holland. The first hypothesis was that non-Caucasian youth would have higher levels of PTSD-related symptoms than Caucasian youth. The second hypothesis was that lower scores on the PTSD related measures would associate with higher scores on a measure of ethnic identity (MEIM). The last hypothesis was that lower scores on the PTSD related measures would associate with higher scores on a measure of family cohesion. Hotelling's T2 and hierarchical linear regressions were used to analyze these hypotheses. Hypothesis one and two were not supported. Hypothesis three was supported, suggesting that family support is related to the onset of PTSD symptoms. Limitations, clinical implications, and future directions were discussed.

Keywords

Abuse; Child abuse; Child maltreatment; Ethnicity; Families; Family support; Foster home care; Identity (Psychology); Post-traumatic stress disorder; Psychology

Disciplines

Child Psychology | Family, Life Course, and Society | Health Psychology | Mental and Social Health | Psychology | Race and Ethnicity

Language

English