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THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN FIRST-GENERATION AMERICAN-BORN ASIAN

INDIAN HINDUS AND IMMIGRATED ASIAN INDIAN HINDUS ON MEASURES

OF ACCULTURATION, SELF-CONCEPT, AND ATTITUDES TOWARD

COUNSELING: A MIXED METHODS STUDY

____________

A Dissertation

Presented to

The Faculty of the Department of Educational Leadership

and Counseling

Sam Houston State University

_____________

In Partial Fulfillment of the

Requirements for the Degree of

Doctor of Philosophy

_____________

by

Bipin Sharma
July, 2010

ii
THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN FIRST-GENERATION AMERICAN-BORN ASIAN

INDIAN HINDUS AND IMMIGRATED ASIAN INDIAN HINDUS ON MEASURES

OF ACCULTURATION, SELF-CONCEPT, AND ATTITUDES TOWARD

COUNSELING: A MIXED METHODS STUDY

by

Bipin Sharma

____________

APPROVED:
___________________________________
_
Dr. Mary Nichter
Dissertation Chair

___________________________________
_
Dr. Rick Bruhn
Dissertation Committee Member

___________________________________
_
Dr. Yvonne Garza
Dissertation Committee Member
___________________________________
_
Dr. Melinda Miller Holt
Dissertation Committee Member

___________________________________
_
Dr. William Kritsonis
Dissertation Committee Member

Approved:

_____________________________
Dr. Genevieve H. Brown
Dean, College of Education

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This dissertation follows the format and style of the Publication Manual of the American
Psychological Association, Sixth Edition except where superseded by the directions from
the Office of Graduate Studies at Sam Houston State University.

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DEDICATION

First and foremost this dissertation is dedicated to my deceased grandparents

Krishna and Hira Nand Sharma and Diwan Chand and Shanti Gandotra. At some point in

my childhood they instilled in me the importance of education.

This dissertation is dedicated to the following people: My parents, Dr. Primla and

Bansi Dhar Sharma, without their support and effort I would never have been able to

make it this far. My mother committed herself to seeking out the best for me in my life

and without her I would never have had the commitment or patience to complete this

task. This dissertation is dedicated to my sister Dr. Kavita Sharma and my brothers Dr.

Bhanoo Sharma and Bikram Sharma for their continued support and ability to listen. This

dissertation is dedicated to my friends for listening to me and continually encouraging me

Dwight Ekstrom, Brett Chinski, and Matt Beutler.

Most importantly this dissertation is dedicated to my wife Elsa, son Dev Raj, and

mother-in-law Maria Del Carmen Vega-Bhandari who supported me day-to-day in my

endeavor to obtain my goals and lighten the load of everyday life.

Last but not least this dissertation is dedicated to my community, family, and my

faith as a Hindu. Throughout my life when I needed it most, I relied on my community,

family, and faith for support and this achievement is another indication of my

commitment to positively promoting Asian Indian Hindus.

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ABSTRACT

Sharma, B. S. (2010). The differences between first generation American born Asian
Indian Hindus and immigrated Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-concept, and
attitudes toward seeking counseling: A mixed methods study. Doctor of Philosophy
(Counselor Education), July 2010 Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas.

Purpose

This study, examined the differences between first-generation American-born

Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation,

self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling.

Method

Following an extensive review of the literature, 108 participants were assessed

using a sequential quantitative-qualitative analysis mixed-method design using nested

samples. Of the 108 participants, 52 belonged to the first generation American born

Asian Indian sample group and 56 belonged to the immigrated Asian Indian Hindu

sample. One hundred and eight participants completed instruments for acculturation,

self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking professional counseling help. Further, of the

108 participants, 32 completed a semi-structured interview. Twenty members were of the

first generation American born Asian Indian Hindu sample and 12 members were from

the immigrated Asian Indian Hindu sample.

Results

Quantitative data alone failed to find any differences between these two groups;

however, acculturation levels were different, a finding that was expected indicating

higher acculturation levels for the first generation American-born Asian Indian Hindus.

The quantitative data revealed no significant differences between groups in terms of their

attitudes toward seeking counseling and their self-concepts.The qualitative data obtained

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from the semi-structured interviews suggested differences, similarities, and clarification

of the quantitative results for the three constructs.

Implications for Counseling

Implications based on the results suggest that going to counseling is a last resort

and is expressive of desperation even with the stigma, and if the counseling practitioner is

unaware of the seriousness of these issues, the client might experience a lack of hope in

ever getting help. First generation American born group members reported higher rates of

alienation and feelings of dual membership. These results indicate that first-generation

American-born Asian Indians recognize that they are not completely American or Indian.

Several members of both groups indicate the positive influence that Hinduism has on

their lives and the involvement they have with Hindu rituals, functions, and social

occasions. Having this knowledge base is vital to avoid disrespecting or overstepping

boundaries when entering into a counseling relationship with a Hindu client. Finally

participants report seeking counseling or knowing of a friend or family member who has

sought counseling. This knowledge is helpful for counselors because it indicates that

there is a willingness to use counseling services even though there is a high degree of

stigma and view that counseling is a last resort.

KEY WORDS: Asian Indian, Asian Indian Hindu, Acculturation Self-Concept, and
Attitudes toward seeking counseling, Religion and Cultural Affiliation.

APPROVED:

___________________________________
_
Dr. Mary Nichter
Dissertation Chair

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I would like to thank and acknowledge Dr. Mary Nichter for continually making

sure that I stayed on task and even when frustrated did not lose focus of my goal. Thank

you for your dedication and support.

Thank you Dr. Bruhn, Dr. Garza, Dr. Holt, and Dr. Kristsonis. Without your

support I would never have been able to reach this stage of my life. The unconditional

support that I received from these people was unwavering throughout my academic

career. I would like to acknowledge Dr. Holt for being very patient and supportive while

trying to teach me statistics. She was always available and extremely patient with me.

My sincere appreciation is given to Cohort V. The support that I received from

the members throughout the academic process was by far the pillars that kept my world

in place. I would like to specifically acknowledge cohort member Rebecca Frels, you

managed to find time to listen to me and encourage me through this process even though

you were going through the process yourself. I sincerely appreciate your friendship and

am eternally grateful. I would also like to thank John Holland Robinson for your

assistance in teaching me technology to make my life easier.

I would like to thank my professors Dr. Richard Henriksen, Dr. Richard Watts,

Dr. Rick Bruhn, Dr. Mary Nichter, Dr. Kate Walker, Dr. John Slate, and Dr. Anthony

Onwuegbuzie. I would never have developed the skills and understanding necessary for

me to function at this level if it were not for the expert tutelage and constant support of

the most dedicated educators I have ever known. My sincerest regards rest with all of you

for your integrity and commitment for higher education.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page

DEDICATION..................................................................................................................v

ABSTRACT.....................................................................................................................vi

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS...........................................................................................viii

TABLE OF CONTENTS.................................................................................................ix

LIST OF TABLES..........................................................................................................xii

I INTRODUCTION.......................................................................................................1

Statement of the Problem..................................................................................................4

Purpose of the Study..........................................................................................................5

Significance of the Study...................................................................................................5

Definitions.........................................................................................................................6

Conceptual Framework.....................................................................................................7

Research Questions.........................................................................................................10

Limitations.......................................................................................................................11

Delimitations...................................................................................................................12

Assumptions....................................................................................................................12

Summary and Overview..................................................................................................12

II LITERATURE REVIEW..........................................................................................14

Generalization of Cultural Affiliation ............................................................................15

Foundations of Hinduism................................................................................................16

Counseling With Asian Indian Hindus............................................................................22

Acculturation of Asian Indians in the United States.......................................................24

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Self-Concept....................................................................................................................29

Attitudes Toward Counseling..........................................................................................33

Summary..........................................................................................................................37

III METHODOLOGY....................................................................................................40

Selection of Participants..................................................................................................41

Research Design..............................................................................................................41

Instrumentation................................................................................................................44

Data Collection................................................................................................................52

Data Analysis...................................................................................................................61

Summary..........................................................................................................................65

IV RESULTS..................................................................................................................67

Research Questions.........................................................................................................67

Demographic Data...........................................................................................................68

Results for Research Questions 3 and 4..........................................................................80

Summary..........................................................................................................................95

V DISCUSSION OF RESULTS...................................................................................97

Overview of the Purpose and Structure...........................................................................97

Discussion of Quantitative Results..................................................................................98

Discussion of Qualitative Results..................................................................................101

Discussion of Combined Results...................................................................................107

Conclusions...................................................................................................................111

Summary........................................................................................................................116

REFERENCES..............................................................................................................118

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APPENDIX A...............................................................................................................134

APPENDIX B................................................................................................................137

APPENDIX C................................................................................................................141

APPENDIX D...............................................................................................................143

APPENDIX F................................................................................................................149

APPENDIX G...............................................................................................................161

APPENDIX H...............................................................................................................162

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LIST OF TABLES

Table Page

xii
1

CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION

Ethnic, racial, and cultural diversity have defined the idea of the American

melting pot (Farver, Bhadha, & Narang, 2002; Ghuman, 1997; Mathur, Guiry, & Tikoo,

2008; Sundar, 2008; Smith, 2002; Tewary, 2005). Increasing immigrant populations from

several cultural groups from various regions of the world have reshaped the American

landscape in respect to race and ethnicity. It is the contention of several authors (Farver

et al., 2002; Ghuman, 1997; Mathur et al., 2008; Smith, 2002; Sundar, 2008; Tewary,

2005) that many immigrated populations maintained their attachment to their culture of

origin; whereas, the first generation born in the United States has been raised in both a

culture of origin (e.g, Asian Indian) and a larger mainstream culture (Farver et al., 2002;

Kurien, 2005; Sundar, 2008).

Researchers (Hall, 1976; Hoftsede, 1983, 2001) suggested that the recognition of

groups is essential for understanding the cross-cultural issues that any given population

encounters when acculturating.Several researchers (Gudykunst, 2004; Hofstede, 2001;

Samovar, Porter, & Stefani, 1998) have noted that cultural affiliation incorporates several

areas such as thoughts, communication, actions, customs, beliefs, values, race, and

religion.

Asian Indians define themselves culturally largely based on their religious

affiliation (Juthani, 2001). Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus that migrated to the United

States in 1965 established themselves in a foreign country by building temples, and small

Indian communities that included shops and restaurants in order to maintain a connection

with both their spiritual and cultural roots (Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Navsaria &
2

Peterson, 2007; Ramisetty-Mikler, 1993). Asian Indian Hindu immigrants sought to

preserve their culture through social interaction with other Asian Indian Hindus hence

delaying the acculturation process in the immigrated Asian Indian population. Tewary

(2005) found that many immigrants isolated themselves due to unfamiliarity with the

dominant cultural groups’ values and norms, and hypothesized that the isolation led to

Asian Indians becoming more socially active within their group in an effort to remain

connected to their culture of origin (Ghuman, 1997; Mathur, Guiry, & Tikoo, 2008;

Sundar, 2008; Tewary, 2005).

As a result of the migration and subsequent isolation, immigrated Asian Indians

focused their efforts in re-creating the familiar surroundings they left behind in India.

One of the largest socializing agents for Asian Indians is religion (Farvar, Bhadha, &

Narang, 2002). Religious activity is among the leading factors that contribute to an Asian

Indian’s sense of social acceptance and cultural identity, as well as providing social and

psychological support.

Asian Indian Religious Diversity

India is an ethnically and religiously diverse subcontinent, and social identity is

largely influenced by affiliation to an organized religion (Ibrahim, Ohnishi, & Sandhu,

1997; Juthani, 2001; Tilson & Venkateswaran, 2006). Asian Indians are affiliated with

various religious groups such as Islam, Buddhist, Sikhism, Christian, and Hindu (Das &

Kemp, 1997; Navsaria & Peterson, 2007). Hinduism is the largest Asian Indian religious

group in India with 83% of the population identified as Hindu. Other religious groups

comprise the remaining 17% with 11% Islam, 3% Christian, Sikh 2%, and 1% Buddhist

and other religions (Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005). According Lugo et al. (2008) in
3

their survey on religious diversity of Asians in the United States, 14% were Hindu, 9%

were Buddhists, and 4% were Muslim. Hindus comprise a significant population in the

United States among other Asian Indian religious groups (Das & Kemp, 1997; Hodge,

2004; Lugo et al. 2008; Smith, 2002).

According to Juthani (2001), Hinduism is not just a religious affiliation for a

Hindu, but a way of life thereby, creating a distinct and unique cultural group. As a

unique cultural group, Hindus have been described by some researchers (Coogan, 2005;

Firth, 2005; “Hindu Arrival in America,” 2006; Moodley, 1999) as a self-contained or

closed group, and may not be comfortable seeking help from a secular source outside of

the Hindu religion (Hanna & Green, 2004; “Hindu Arrival in America,” 2006; Hodge,

2004; “The Swamis,” 2003).

The strong influence of religion on lifestyle is not unique to Hindus. According to

Chandras (1997) and Das and Kemp (1997), the culture, view of the world, and day-to-

day living of Asian Indian people is strongly influenced by their religious affiliation.

With a growing population in America, research specific to the Asian Indian population

has increased; however, there is a need for more research addressing the diversity of the

religious and spiritual communities of Asian Indian population. According to several

authors, limited information exists in the literature to understand an Asian Indian Hindus’

level of acculturation, self-concept, and their attitudes toward seeking counseling

(Chandras, 1997; Das & Kemp, 1997; Hanna & Green, 2004; Hodge, 2004; Ibrahim,

Ohnishi, & Sandhu; Ramisety-Mikler, 1993).


4

Statement of the Problem

The population of Asian Indians in the United States is rapidly increasing (Hodge,

2004; Humes & McKinnon, 2000; Navsaria & Peterson, 2007; U.S. Census Bureau,

2007). According to the latest census conducted in 2000, the Asian Indian population has

doubled to nearly 0.6% in the United States equating roughly 2,570,000 people (Hodge,

2004; Humes & McKinnon, 2000; Navsaria & Peterson, 2007; U.S. Census Bureau,

2007). Asian Indians are the fastest growing ethnic minority group in the U.S. among the

Asian population, and it is estimated that by the year 2050 the total population of Asian

Indians could exceed 4 million (Chandras, 1997; Navsaria & Peterson, 2007).

Misperceptions are often presented as a result of insensitive and inaccurate

description of persons from an Asian Indian background, and broad assumptions are

made by not recognizing the uniqueness and differences between people of Asian Indian

descent and people from other Asian countries (Chandras, 1997; Dorland & Kepford,

2005; Ibrahim, Ohnishi, & Sandhu, 1997; Juthani, 2001; Tilson & Venkateswaran, 2006).

As a result of migration and the population increase within the United States, the

population of the various religious groups (e.g. Hindu, Sikh, Muslim, Christian, and

Buddhist) has increased.

Several researchers have included various groups such as Chinese, Taiwanese,

Japanese, Korean, Indian, and Pakistani under the broad term Asian (Abrahams, 2007;

Balasubramanyam, 2005; Khan-Lodhi, 2005; Zhang & Dixon, 2003). Asian Indians need

to be considered separately from these other groups as their experiences, culture, and

religious affiliation vary significantly (Abrahams, 2007; Balasubramanyam, 2005; Khan-

Lodhi, 2005; Zhang & Dixon, 2003).


5

Purpose of the Study

In my study, I examined the differences between first-generation American-born

Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation,

self-concept and attitudes toward counseling. My goal was to increase the literature that

specifically pertains to Asian Indian Hindus, and contribute to the literature available for

mental health practitioners that work with Asian Indian Hindus.

Significance of the Study

Previous research pertaining to the complexity and diversity of the Hindu culture

in relation to the topics of acculturation, self-concept and attitudes toward counseling has

yielded limited information (Chandras, 1997; Das & Kemp, 1997; Ibrahim, Ohnishi &

Sandhu, 1997; Ramisetty-Mikler, 1993). By conducting the study I increased the

literature that specifically addressed the Asian Indian Hindu people. Immigrated Asian

Indian Hindus and Asian Indian Hindus in general, rely heavily on the Hindu religion as

their definition of culture. Birthdays, weddings, seasonal changes, birth, and death

ceremonies are only some aspects of the culture that have roots in the Hindu religious

doctrine (Chandras, 1997; Dorland & Kepford, 2005; Ibrahim, Ohnishi, & Sandhu, 1997;

Juthani, 2001; Tilson & Venkateswaran, 2006).

The counseling community of professionals might benefit from the findings of

my study as a result of having acquired knowledge through the collection and analysis of

my data for the purposes of counseling Asian Indian Hindus by being better informed

about the influence of Hinduism in all areas of life for members of this religious group.

Because the Asian Indian Hindu population is increasing in America, recognizing Asian
6

Indian Hindus as a unique cultural and religious group will help counselors work more

effectively with Asian Indian Hindus clients.

Definitions

For the purposes of my study, the following definitions were offered:

Acculturation

Acculturation is a process that can occur when two or more cultures interact.

Possible outcomes include assimilation (host culture absorbs immigrant culture),

multiculturalism (both cultures exist with one another), resistance to assimilation, or

adoption of qualities of both cultures (host culture & parent culture) (Suinn, Khoo, &

Ahuna, 1995).

Asian Indian

Asian Indian is a broad and generic term commonly found in research literature

that describes the diverse population of individuals of Asian Indian descent without

taking into account religious affiliations.

Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale (ATSPPHS)

The ATSPPHS is an instrument developed by Fischer and Turner (1970) for the

purposes of assessing a person’s attitudes toward seeking professional psychological

help. For the purposes of my study, I used attitudes toward seeking counseling in place of

attitudes toward seeking psychological help.

First generation American born Asian Indian Hindus

In my study, first generation American born Asian Indian Hindus are Asian

Indian Hindu persons that are born in the United States, or immigrated to the United

States between the ages of 0-9 years.


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Asian Indian Hindu

In my study, an Asian Indian Hindu is a person that has lineage traceable to the

Indian subcontinent and represents a religious and cultural affiliation.

Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus

Asian Indian Hindus that have immigrated to America, are born in India, and are

18 years or older.

Self-Concept

According to the authors of the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale-2 (TSCS-2), self-

concept incorporates physical, moral, personal, family, social, and academic/work beliefs

one has about oneself (Fitts & Warren, 1996).

Suinn-Lew Asian Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA)

An instrument with psychometric properties specifically designed to examine and

report the acculturation levels of the Asian Indian population (Suinn, Rikard-Figueroa,

Lew, & Vigil 1987; Suinn, Khoo, Ahuna 1995).

Tennessee Self-Concept Scale-2 (TSCS-2).

An instrument used to measure self-concept with established psychometric

properties that uses 82 questions, and has 15 subscales that include validity scores,

summary scores, self-concept scales, and supplementary scores (Fitts & Warren, 2003).

Conceptual Framework

In the following section, I discussed the conceptual framework for my study.

According to Lester (2005), conceptual frameworks are derived from previous research,

but provide the basis for choosing constructs in an investigation and any relationship that

might exist between them. Further, the justification for the use of certain constructs and
8

the relationship between must be appropriate and useful for examining the research

problem (Lester). I related the importance of examining the levels of acculturation, self-

concept, and attitudes toward seeking professional counseling for Asian Indian Hindus.

Acculturation

Acculturation is regarded as a multidimensional process, and several models have

been developed to examine the impact of acculturation on minority populations that enter

a host or dominant culture (Berry, 1980; Berry 2001; Berry, Trimble, & Olmeda, 1986;

Suinn, Khoo, & Ahuna, 1995; Setty, 2006). The acculturation process has been examined

by researchers (Berry, 1980; Phinney, 1990) and the commonalities between definitions

of acculturation vary. For example, Phinney (1990) defined acculturation as the

relationship between the host culture and the minority culture with emphasis on the

knowledge of the cultures. However, several researchers (Balasubramanayam, 2005;

Ghosh, 2007; Moideen, 1995; Setty) have found that Berry’s definition of acculturation is

useful because it does not view acculturation as linear; rather, acculturation is seen as a

process with high and low levels of minority group member commitment to the dominant

culture also known as the bi-dimensional perspective (Balasubramanyam; Berry; Ghosh;

Moideen; Setty). Berry (1980/2001) argued that acculturation has consequences for both

of the cultural groups (i.e., host and minority), and that acculturation includes both the

minority groups membership to the mainstream and their culture of origin.

Suinn, Khoo and Ahuna (1995) defined acculturation as a process that can occur

when two or more cultures interact. Possible outcomes included assimilation (host culture

absorbs immigrant culture), multiculturalism (both cultures exist with one another),

resistance to assimilation, or adoption of qualities of both cultures (host culture & parent
9

culture). These researchers created an instrument that has been widely used with Asian

populations to examine the process of acculturation in order to gain a better

understanding of the difficulties faced by the Asian populations. This instrument has been

used with the Asian Indian population by several researchers (Balasubramanyam, 2005;

Farvar, Bhadha, & Narang 2002; Ghosh, 2007; Ghuman, 1997; Rao 2007), who

concluded that the Suinn-Lew Asian Self-Identity Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA; 1987)

who concluded that the instrument adequately measure the level of acculturation of Asian

Indians.

Self-Concept

Self-concept has been examined in several studies alongside ethnic identity

(Balasubramanayam, 2005; Martinez & Dukes, 1997; Phinney, 1990). These researchers

found that irregardless of the population they were studying (e.g., Asain, Asian Indian,

Hispanic, Caucasian, and African) a person’s ethnic identity and self-concept were

related, and that those who identified strongly with their ethnicity had higher levels of

self-concept. Self-concept has been defined by Fitts and Warren (1996) to incorporate a

person’s physical, moral, personal, family, social, and academic/work attitudes along

with their identity, satisfaction, and behavior.

Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help

Kwok (2004) examined the relationship between acculturation level and attitudes

toward seeking professional psychological help. She found that acculturation and

utilization of mental health services were related. Further, authors Kurien (1999) and

Mukkamala (2009) have stated that religion and spirituality serve as a source of support

for illness (physical and mental). It is necessary to explore the spirituality of a client
10

before beginning a counseling relationship, and also being aware of one’s own spiritual

convictions in order to enhance the counseling relationship (Watts, 2001).

These constructs (e.g., acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking

counseling) have been examined independently with the Asian Indian population;

however, these constructs had not been examined together with a specific religious group.

Given that the largest Asian Indian religious group in the U.S. is Hindu (14% Hindu, 9%

Buddhists, and 4% Muslim); (Pew Forum, 2008), and the fact that the above mentioned

variables had never been examined specifically with Hindus, it appeared logical to

examine the differences between first generation born American Asian Indian Hindus and

Immigrated Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward

seeking professional counseling.

Research Questions

I answered the following research questions using Fitts and Warren’s (1996)

Tennessee Self-Concept Scale (2nd ed.), Attitude Toward Seeking Professional

Psychological Help Scale (Fischer & Turner, 1970) and Suinn-Lew Asian Acculturation

Scale (SL-ASIA) (Suinn, Richard-Figueroa, Lew, & Vigil, 1987, 1992). Further, a

qualitative interview was used to investigate the perceptions of first generation American

born Asian Indian Hindus and Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus about counseling.

1) What are the differences between first generation American born Asian Indian

Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-concept

and attitudes toward seeking counseling?


11

2) What is the relationship between length of time in the United States and level

of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling for immigrated Asian

Indian Hindus?

3) What are the perceptions of first generation American born Asian Indian

Hindus about counseling?

4) What are the perceptions of immigrated Asian Indian Hindus about


counseling?

Limitations

The current research was only generalizable to the Asian Indian Hindu population

living in the Houston, Texas and Chicago, Illinois, and cannot be generalized to every

Hindu living in the United States of America. I could not ensure that all participants

responded truthfully. Parts of my research relied heavily on self report measures, and as a

result, I could not ensure that all participants were in fact practicing Asian Indian Hindus.

Participants may have presented themselves in a more favorable manner once they were

informed about the purpose of the current research by exaggerating their commitment to

their Hindu faith, and also as a result of knowing that I am a member of the same

religious and cultural group.

Also, I am not taking into consideration the age or socioeconomic status of the

participants. Hinduism promotes the idea of worshipping several various reincarnations

of the supreme Lord. This study did not address the issue of the various reincarnations

worshipped by the participants, nor did this consideration factor into the original

definition of a Hindu, however, I inquired as to which deity the participants primarily

worship for demographic data.


12

Delimitations

The study was delimited to persons that are born and raised in the Hindu religion

and of Asian Indian descent. People who converted to the Hindu religion were not

incorporated. I did not include other religious groups in the study. The results are

intended to be representative of the Asian Indian Hindu population only. The sample used

in my study was a religiously homogenous sample; all participants were of Asian Indian

descent who practiced the Hindu religion at the time of data collection.

Assumptions

As the researcher, I assumed that all participants responded truthfully and

honestly. I also assumed that all participants understood the content of the questions

asked. This study specifically focused on a subset of the Asian Indian population and

including members from other religious groups would have compromised the results of

the study. I assumed that I was adequately trained to conduct the research, competent and

capable to administer the instrument protocols, and analyze the results.

Summary and Overview

Asian Indian Hindus are a growing population in U.S. and need to be recognized

as a unique cultural group separate of other Asian Indian religious groups (Chandras,

1997; Ibrahim, Ohnishi, & Sandhu, 1997; Ramisety-Mikler, 1993). Ethnic and religious

differences, which are important to cultural identity (Gudykunst, 2004; Hofstede, 2001;

Samovar, Porter, & Stefani, 1998), go largely unnoticed in the current research literature.

India is a diverse subcontinent, where cultural identity is largely defined by affiliation to

an organized religion (Ibrahim, Ohnishi, & Sandhu, 1997; Juthani, 2001; Tilson &

Venkateswaran, 2006). The Asian Indian population is representative of numerous


13

religious groups such as Islam, Buddhist, Sikh, Christians, and Hindus (Das & Kemp,

1997; Navsaria & Peterson, 2007).

Due to unfamiliarity with the religious diversity of the Asian Indian population,

researchers often presented an insensitive and inaccurate description of persons from an

Asian Indian background, and made very broad assumptions by defining Asians as

having common characteristics due mainly to geographic location (Chandras, 1997;

Dorland & Kepford, 2005; Ibrahim, Ohnishi, & Sandhu, 1997; Juthani, 2001; Tilson &

Venkateswaran, 2006). I examined the differences between first-generation American-

born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of

acculturation, self-concept and attitudes toward counseling.

In the following chapter, an overview of the literature pertaining to cultural

affiliation, counseling with Asian Indian Hindus, acculturation of Asian Indians in the

United States, self-concept, and studies examining the attitudes toward seeking

professional psychological help scale of people from various ethnic groups is presented.
14

CHAPTER II

LITERATURE REVIEW

An extensive search of the interdisciplinary academic literature on counseling the

Hindu population in the United States revealed a dearth of empirical studies. Overall,

limited research has been conducted with Asian Indians in the U.S. even though this

population has increased exponentially (Hodge, 2004; Humes & McKinnon, 2000;

Navsaria & Peterson, 2007; U.S. Census Bureau, 2007). Several authors have argued that

it is a mistake to define such unique religious cultures such as Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims,

Buddhists, and several others under a broad and generic term such as Asian Indian

(Hodge, 2004; Humes & McKinnon, 2000; Navsaria & Peterson, 2007; U.S. Census

Bureau, 2007). Previous research on the topic of Hinduism and counseling has yielded

limited information pertaining to the complexity and diversity of the Hindu culture

(Chandras, 1997; Das & Kemp, 1997; Ibrahim, Ohnishi, & Sandhu, 1997; Ramisety-

Mikler, 1993). The literature often presents an insensitive and inaccurate description of

persons from an Asian Indian background, and some researchers make very broad

assumptions by not recognizing the uniqueness and vast differences between these groups

ethnic and religious groups (Chandras, 1997; Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Navsaria &

Peterson, 2007).

I reviewed the following literature: (a) the Generalization of cultural affiliation;

(b) the foundations of Hinduism; (c) counseling with Asian Indian Hindus; (d)

acculturation of Asian Indians in the United States; (e) self-concept; (f) attitudes toward

counseling; and (f) the summary.


15

Generalization of Cultural Affiliation

Kim, Ng, and Ahn (2009) asserted that there are common cultural values among

diverse cultural groups such as worldview, conflict resolution, spirituality, adherence to

family values, respect of elders, and several others. The researchers overlooked the

complexity of various cultural and religious groups such as Chinese, Filipino, Japanese,

Korean, Asian Indian, Taiwanese, multi-racial (no definition was provided), Vietnamese,

Indonesian, Pakistani, and other ethnic backgrounds (no definition was provided). Zhang

and Dixon (2003) examined the relationship between the attitudes toward seeking

professional psychological help and acculturation. The researchers used a sample from

two universities in the Midwestern United States which consisted of 170 Asians including

Chinese (those from Hong Kong), Japanese, Koreans, Taiwanese, people from Thailand,

Malaysians, and Indians. Again, several distinct cultural groups were used to create a

sample of Asians.

Moreover, in order to determine the presenting concerns of racial and ethnic

minorities seeking counseling in a university center, Constantine, Chen, and Ceesay

(1997) examined the presenting issues identified by minority students as the reason for

seeking counseling. The researchers reviewed 157 minority students representing

different ethnic groups including Hispanic Americans, African American, Asian

American, and Native American. In this study, minority was used to represent one group

which actually comprised several different cultural groups.

In several of the studies that I reviewed researchers did not describe their

population accurately and made assumptions that cultural groups such as Koreans,

Chinese, people from Thailand, Taiwanese, Indian and Pakistani were all Asian (Kim,
16

Ng, & Ahn, 2009; Zhang & Dixon, 2003), while other researchers labeled different ethnic

groups collectively under the label of minority (Constantine, Chen, & Cessay, 1997). In a

similar way, Asian Indians have been classified as one group without consideration given

to the distinctive differences within the group based on religion. In the following section,

important foundational concepts of Hinduism are presented, followed by research studies

that recognize the importance of religious affiliation for Asian Indians

Foundations of Hinduism

The Hindu religion originated between 2500 BC and 1500 BC (Coogan, 2005,

Hanna & Green, 2004, Juthani, 2001). Specific to the religion are several beliefs that are

extremely important and fundamental for understanding how practicing Hindus view

their world. For example, Hindus believe in a trinity; (a) Brahma the creator, (b) Vishnu

the maintainer, and (c) Mahesh (Lord Shiva) the destroyer (Firth, 2005: Hanna & Green,

2004; Juthani, 2001; Sullivan 2001). Hindus primarily pray to Vishnu and Mahesh and to

reincarnations of these Gods (Flood, 1996; Juthani; Sullivan).

Gods and Goddesses

The Hindu faith has numerous Gods and Goddesses and the following represent

several reincarnations of Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva also known as Mahesh: (a)

Saraswati the Goddess of knowledge; (b) Lakshmi, the Goddess of prosperity; (c) Durga,

the Goddess of strength; (d) Krishna, the God of love and destroyer of evil; (e) Gauri, the

Goddess of purity, and (f) Hanuman, the God courage and devotion. Hindu Gods and

Goddesses can manifest or be represented in both human and animal form. For instance,

Lord Ganesh and Lord Hanuman are represented as having human bodies but the face of
17

an elephant and monkey respectively (Flood, 1996; Kinsley, 1998; Sullivan, 2001; The

Hindu Universe, 2008).

Hindu people, with the help of a priest, perform several rituals to pay homage to

the God or Goddess they choose to worship. For example, if a family was experiencing

financial problems, the family would request that a priest perform ceremonies and rituals

to the Goddess Luxmi, also known as the Goddess of good fortune and prosperity. In

essence, Hindu people can worship several Gods and Goddesses based on the

circumstances that they may encounter in their everyday lives (Flood, 1996; Kinsley,

1998; Sullivan, 2001; The Hindu Universe, 2008). Hindus who worship and perform

rituals often maintain an inner-connectedness with their spirituality in all facets of their

lives. For instance, at major events such as a wedding, or birth of a child, the Hindu

person will ask for the blessing of Lord Ganesh also known as the God of good

beginnings. Also, if the Hindu person feels a lack of courage and desires to feel

empowered, Hindu people will worship and give offerings to Lord Hanuman, also known

as the God of courage. Other reincarnations of Vishnu and Mahesh serve different

functions and most likely are prayed to when such circumstances present themselves.

Teaching of Hinduism

Hinduism is taught through oral and written history. For example, the Vedas,

containing the major scriptures of the Hindu religion, are written in the ancient language

of Sanskrit, and are divided into four parts (Sharma, 2005). The four parts are: Rigveda,

Samaveda, Yajurveda, and Atharvaveda. The Rigveda and Samaveda are a collection of

ancient hymns and chants used in ceremonies to praise God, while the Yajurveda

contains the language needed to perform the rituals and ceremonies for the Gods.
18

Finally, the Atharvaveda is the ancient text that contains the ritual spells and poems used

for vedic recitation of Hindu scripture (Flood, 1996; Juthani, 2001; Sullivan, 2001).

There is also a belief that the Vedas, or scriptures, are the word of God as is the Bible and

the Koran (Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Firth, 2005; Sharma, 2005). However, the

common belief is that the four ancient texts of scriptures create the philosophical

foundation of practicing Hindus. The Vedas are used by priests to perform ceremonies

and rituals that help alleviate the problems experienced by the Hindu person (Juthani;

Sullivan).

Finally, two major texts that outline and provide a discussion of the Vedas as they

pertain to decisions one must make in everyday life are the Bhagavad Gita and the

Ramayana (Hiltebeitel, 2003; Juthani, 2001; Sullivan, 2001). The Bhagavad Gita was

created from the epic story called the Mahabharat that describes the interaction of a

mortal man Arjuna and Lord Krishna (Hiltebeitel; Sullivan). The Gita has become one of

the most prominent texts of the Hindu religion, and is regarded as the word of God. On

the other hand, the Ramayana is an epic that details the history of an exiled prince that is

forced to encounter situations that test his social, familial, and religious obligations

(Flood, 1996). Many scholars have described the Ramayana as an example of how one

should live a life that adheres to the principals and foundations set forth in Hinduism

(Flood; Rinehart, 2004; Sullivan).

Bhagavad Gita

The story of the Bhagavad Gita describes a conversation that took place between

Lord Krishna and Arjuna before the battle began in the epic story called the Mahabharat.

Arjuna asked Lord Krishna, who had decided to be Arjuna’s chariot driver for the
19

duration of the battle, to take him to view the enemy. The enemy he observed were also

Arjuna’s kin such as cousins, uncles, and spiritual elders. As Arjuna observed his family,

knowing that he would kill them all especially since Lord Krishna was his chariot driver,

he asked Lord Krishna how he could live in accordance with Hindu principles when he

knew that he was going to kill so many people. What ensued was a discussion of

reincarnation, spirituality, the difference between right and wrong, and what tasks one

had to fulfill throughout his or her life.

Lord Krishna informed Arjuna about the spirit and explicitly stated that the spirit

of man is reborn, giving prominence to the principal of reincarnation (Sullivan, 2001).

Krishna again revealed to Arjuna that accumulating karma causes rebirth, and his

enemies will have the opportunity to be reborn and live a life that is acceptable and in

alignment to the principles of dharma (the social, spiritual, and familial obligations) in

order to achieve moksa (to break free of the reincarnation cycle) and to become one with

the trinity (Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Firth, 2005; Rinehart, 2004; Sullivan).

Further, each chapter of the book is recited in hymn format, and each chapter describes

various points of conversation that occurred between Arjuna and Lord Krishna.

Ramayana

In the epic story the Ramayana, Lord Rama has to balance many aspects of his

life while keeping in mind his obligations to society, his family, and his spirituality

(Rinehart, 2004). Lord Rama is exiled as a result of his father’s decision regarding who

would be heir to his kingdom. Lord Rama was the eldest and the rightful heir, but instead

of fighting for his birthright, he followed his father’s instructions and spent several years

wandering in the jungles. Lord Rama’s wife Sita and younger brother Luxman felt a
20

familial and societal obligation to support and be present with Lord Rama and therefore

decided to follow Lord Rama into the jungles versus living a life of comfort (Flood,

1996; Hiltebeitel, 2003; Sullivan, 2001). During his journey Lord Rama was faced with

many trials and tribulations, and had to balance his personal faith and his obligations to

his family and society. The Ramayana is an epic story that embodying the basic values

and concerns many Hindus may face in their everyday lives (Rinehert; Sullivan; Juthani,

2001).

Several of the topics discussed above outline the complexities of the Hindu

religion. For example, the various texts, ideas such as reincarnation, and specific stories

of various Gods and Goddesses highlight the often overlooked differences of people of

Indian origin. Hinduism is a complex religion with an ancient history, and the preceding

information should be viewed as a brief introduction to the religion. In the following

sections, research studies are presented that examine the Asian Indian Hindu population

as an independent religious and cultural group. Specifically, I found research studies that

highlighted the importance of knowing foundational Hindu religious concepts before

working with Hindu clients. In the next section studies discussing foundational concepts

related to reincarnation and freedom from the rebirthing cycle (moksa) are presented.

Hindu Concepts of Death and Reincarnation

Reincarnation is another important philosophical foundation for a Hindu. Critical

in the Hindu belief structure, is the belief that the Hindu person must observe the laws of

karma and adhere to the principles of dharma, in order to stop the rebirth cycle (Sullivan,

2001; Flood, 1996; Rinehart, 2004). The ultimate goal of a Hindu is to achieve moksa

which is defined as the freedom from the rebirth cycle through death (Sullivan; Flood). If
21

a person is able to live a good life, according to dharmic principles, then he or she will be

granted the liberation from the rebirth cycle and be united with the trinity (Flood; Juthani,

Sullivan; Sharma, 2005). Death is a fundamental concept essential for conducting

counselingwith Hindu clients because the practices and beliefs regarding death are

different when compared to other religious groups.

Firth (2005) presented end of life concerns that were of importance to Hindu

clients. The author summarized important religious, social, gender, and class issues he

claimed were often overlooked when working with Hindu persons that are at the end-of-

life. Presented in the article were several important concepts and a discussion about the

caste system, beliefs about life and death such as: (a) atman (spirit), moksha (freedom),

the Bhagavad Gita, and karma; (b) the importance and differences between good and bad

deaths; (c) disclosure and last rites; and (d) euthanasia. The author presented case studies

of interviews with Asian Indian Hindus that had experienced a family members’ death as

being good and bad. Further, the investigation discussed the implications and provided

suggestions for counselors working with Hindu clients in their last phase of life.

Deshpande, Reid, and Rao (2005) discussed attitudes of Asian Indian Hindus

toward the end of life care. The researchers in this study discussed the impact of karmic

theory on end of life care, the familial decision making process as opposed to the western

individual decision making process, interference by family members in a persons’

individual karmic duty, and finally, the rituals that need to be performed when a person is

at the end-of-life phase. Deshpande, Reid, and Rao presented and discussed several

aspects of each of the above mentioned topics, provided a case scenario, and presented

relevant questions that should be asked of Asian Indian Hindus when dealing with end-
22

of–life care. The authors described the Hindu population as being an individual and

unique group with a set of beliefs that need to be recognized.

Kamal & Loewenthal (2002) conducted a study designed to determine the impact

of religious-cultural beliefs regarding suicide. The research involved two religious-

cultural groups. The researchers used 100 Hindu and Muslim participants between the

ages of 15 and 46 originating from the Indian subcontinent. Researchers administered a

47 item questionnaire that examined reasons for living. Kamal and Loewenthal concluded

that the Hindu participant’s religious-cultural values were more accepting of suicide

when compared to their Muslim counterparts.

Once again, several authors (Firth, 2005; Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Kamal

& Loewenthal, 2002) recognized the differences between Hindus and other religious

groups regarding death and attitudes toward death. These studies emphasized the unique

qualities of the Hindu religion that appeared to be overlooked in studies of Asian Indian

Hindus. When counseling people of Asian Indian descent it is required to understand the

importance given to religion by the person.

Counseling With Asian Indian Hindus

Several authors (Coogan, 2005; Hanna & Green, 2004; Juthani, 2001; Moodley,

1999) have described foundational concepts that are necessary to know before working

with Hindu clients. The common theme among these studies was that each exemplified

the Hindu population as being distinct and separate from other religious groups found on

the Indian subcontinent, and the importance of having prior knowledge of the religion

before undertaking counseling. It is the belief of several authors that Hindus identify

themselves by their religious affiliation (Firth, 2005; Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005;
23

Coogan, 2005; Kamal & Loewenthal, 2002; Juthani, 2001; Moodley, 1999; Holaday,

Leach, & Davidson, 1994).

Coogan (2005) discussed the growth of the Hindu population in America, and

several Hindu concepts such as illness, death, karma, femininity, common conflicts, and

theories of identity. The author primarily discussed the theories of identity and found that

spirituality is the key concept in identity formation for people of Asian Indian descent.

Also, Coogan presented cultural notes for counselors, results of oppression such as

invasions by Islamic and British people, the division into the caste system, and the need

for cultural sensitivity in counseling.

Similarly, Juthani (2001) presented the importance of understanding the Hindu

religion before undertaking counseling with Hindu clients. Juthani postulated that the

Hindu client values his or her religion as being a way of life. He continued to discuss

concepts such as reincarnation, karma, and ancestor worship, that are important in

understanding the Hindu people and emphasized the importance of religion as it pertains

to the cultural identity of Hindu people. This study acknowledged counseling with Hindu

clients as being different from other cultural groups found on the Indian subcontinent.

Moodley (1999) described his experiences with a Hindu client named Shiva. In

this article, the author described his interaction from several different views, and

discussed how untrained he was to work with his client from a Hindu background. The

author discussed the client’s lack of willingness to participate, and the fact that the client

would constantly arrive late for sessions. Also, the author described a two month absence

from counseling by the client who was receiving guidance from a spiritual healer or a

vaid. Moodley suggested that future treatment of minorities that proscribe to spiritual
24

healers should be incorporated into counseling practices by examining the value of the

spiritual healer in the client’s life. The noted author stated that current models for

counseling clients from different backgrounds do not take into account clients from other

diverse cultural and religious backgrounds such as Hindus.

In a qualitative study Holaday, Leach, and Davidson (1994) presented a case

study of a Hindu client that had been raped. In the case study, the Hindu client was not

willing to receive medical treatment because of the shame that her family would have to

deal with as a result of her being raped. Instead of seeking treatment for rape, the client in

question denied being raped and instead chose to lie. The authors provided very specific

details describing the counselor’s frustration when working with the mother of the child

that had been raped. As a result of their experience with this family, the authors discussed

the importance of being culturally aware of the values and beliefs of people from

different ethnic, religious, and minority backgrounds for counselors.

In the above mentioned studies, several authors (Coogan, 2005; Hanna & Green,

2004; Holaday, Leach, & Davidson, 1994; Juthani, 2001; Moodley, 1999) discussed the

need to understand the Hindu faith before working with clients that are practicing Hindus.

Further, authors (Abrahams, 2007; Farvar, Bhadha, & Narang, 2002; Ghuman, 1997;

Kaipa, 2008; Rao, 2007; Sundar, 2008) have stated that when counseling Asian Indians

an important variable for counselors to take into account is their level of acculturation

into the host culture. In the following section acculturation of Asian Indians is discussed.

Acculturation of Asian Indians in the United States

Several researches have examined the impact of acculturation on first generation

Asian Indians (Abrahams, 2007; Farvar, Bhadha, & Narang, 2002; Ghuman, 1997;
25

Kaipa, 2008; Rao, 2007; Sundar, 2008) and have found differences between acculturation

levels of immigrant parents and children (first generation born). Moreover, several of the

aforementioned research studies have examined the difficulties experienced by immigrant

Asian Indians when acculturating to the dominant culture.

In the following sections, several of the research studies discussed the impact of

acculturation within the Asian Indian Population, and my review of the literature also

revealed a disproportionate amount of research (Abrahams, 2007; Balasubramanyam,

2005; Reddy, 2002) that disregarded religious affiliation while examining acculturation.

However, several researchers (Ghuman, 1997; Farvar, Bhadha, & Narang, 2002; Rao,

2007) examined the impact of religious affiliation, and cited religious affiliation as a

predictor for acculturation issues faced by immigrant Asian Indians and first generation

born Asian Indians.

For the purposes of my study, I defined acculturation as a process that can occur

when two or more cultures interact (Suinn, Khoo, & Ahuna, 1995). According to Suinn et

al., possible outcomes may include assimilation (e.g., host culture absorbs immigrant

culture), multiculturalism (e.g., both cultures exist with one another), resistance to

assimilation, or the individual adopts qualities of both cultures (e.g., host culture & parent

culture).

Examination of Acculturation Without Religious Affiliation

Several of the following studies erroneously identified their sample populations

and the researchers (Abrahams, 2007; Balasubramanyam, 2005; Reddy, 2002; Sundar,

2008) overlooked the religious affiliation of their Asian Indian sample. Asian Indian

religions have foundational concepts and beliefs that differentiate these groups from each
26

other, and any person undertaking research with the Asian Indian population must

consider their religious affiliation (Coogan, 2005; Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Firth,

2005; Hanna & Green, 2004; Holaday, Leach, & Davidson, 1994; Juthani, 2001; Kamal

& Loewenthal, 2002; Moodley, 1999). In the following studies, the researchers

(Abrahams; Balasubramanyam; Reddy; Sundar) assessed acculturation among other

concepts, but did not identify the religious affiliation of their sample population. In order

to fill this gap in the research literature, in my study I examined the differences between

first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian

Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-concept and attitudes toward counseling.

Sundar (2008) conducted a study with first generation Canadian Asian Indian

adolescents. Her intent was to examine how the adolescents identify themselves and how

they use their defined identities with other people in their social environments. Sundar

found that the adolescents felt isolated and a part of the mainstream culture, but remained

unsure of their affiliation. However, this author did not examine the role of religious

affiliation and the impact it had on acculturation. In another study, Abrahams (2007)

examined acculturation and personality for Asian Indians in the United States. In the

study, 91 participants were given two instruments, one to determine the level of

acculturation and one to assess personality development. An analysis of the findings from

her study revealed that Asian Indian Americans view personality from Asian Indian

values and culture as opposed to western cultural beliefs. Juthani (2001) emphasized that

religious affiliation must be examined when conducting research with Asian Indians.

Similarly, Balasubramanyam (2005) examined the relationship between self-

concept, ethnic identity, and acculturation in Asian Indian adolescents. The researcher
27

used a sample of 100 adolescents aged 13 to 19, and gave each participant three

instruments to examine the role of acculturation in self-concept and ethnic identity.

Results indicated that acculturation did not impact the relationship between self-concept

and ethnic identity. Finally, Reddy (2002) studied the relationship of ethnic identity,

acculturation, and psychological adjustment among the Asian Indian immigrants. In his

study, 132 participants were instructed to complete five instruments to measure the

adjustment of Asian Indian immigrant’s to the mainstream American culture. Reddy

found that ethnic identity and acculturation did not have a significant influence in Asian

Indian psychological well being.

As mentioned previously, religious identification is among the leading factors

that contribute to an Asian Indian’s sense of social and cultural identity, as well as

providing social and psychological support (Farvar, Bhadha, & Narang 2002). In the next

section, studies that addressed acculturation and religious affiliation are presented.

Examination of Acculturation With Religious Affiliation

In my review of the literature regarding acculturation, I found several researchers

that examined the impact of religious affiliation and acculturation in different contexts.

Religious affiliation was discussed in order to explain some complications that may cause

obstructions in the abilities of Asian Indian Hindus to acculturate.

Rao (2007) articulated difficulties faced by foreign Asian Indian psychiatric

interns as a result of several issues. For example, Rao discussed difficulties that

immigrated Asian Indian medical graduates face when trying to understand the norms

and values of the American culture and therefore increasing feelings of isolation. The

author also discussed language, norms and values, and problems with the differences in
28

world-views. This researcher described the complexity that immigrated Asian Indian

medical graduates face when compared with first generation American born medical

students. Rao’s main purpose was to educate people in charge of medical psychiatric

programs about these differences. Religious implications were discussed suggesting that

core foundational principles of Hinduism may in fact complicate the work the immigrated

Asian Indian medical graduate interns conduct with clients hence adding stress to

acculturation.

Farvar, Bhadha, and Narang (2002) conducted a study the incorporated Asian

Indian parents and their children. All of the parents were born in India and immigrated to

the United States. The participants were given a demographics questionnaire and were

asked to self-identify to the open-ended statement “I consider myself to be __________.”

Researchers were able to conclude based on an analysis of the participants’ responses that

the parents were more likely to identify themselves based on their religious affiliation

whereas the children were more likely to identify themselves based on ethnic identity,

American Indian. The researchers found that if Asian Indian adolescents were to retain

their heritage, there was a possibility that they would encounter alienation from the

dominant culture, and at the same time if they rejected their heritage they would face

alienation in their Asian Indian social group. Results of findings also suggested that those

who identified with their religion were inclined to separate themselves from the dominant

culture.

In another study, Ghuman (1997) examined the impact of acculturation on sixth

grade students of Asian Indian descent. The researcher presented his sample with an

acculturation scale. Ghuman found that religious affiliation led to variations within the
29

sample. For example, the researcher found that various religious groups of Asian Indian

descent scored differently. Further, the results displayed that the youths were aware of

cultural differences and a majority of the sample acknowledged experiencing racism.

According to Ghuman, the experience of racism influenced the students’ willingness to

adopt the dominant culture values. Once again religious affiliation was presented as an

important contributor to the variation of results within the sample, and differences were

found among the religious groups.

Self-Concept

Fitts and Warren defined self-concept as the quest for a person to answer the

question, “who am I?” The authors differentiate self-concept and self-esteem by stating

that self-esteem mainly addresses how a person values him or herself (Fitts & Warren,

1996). These researchers developed the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale-2, an instrument to

measure self-concept with various ethnic, cultural, and religious groups. On the TSCS-2

the total self-concept score is a combination of six subscales (i.e., the physical, moral,

personal, family, social, and academic/work).

Tennessee Self-Concept Scale-2 (TSCS-2)

Specifically, the physical self-concept scale identifies issues that people may have

with their physical attributes, sexuality, health, and view of one’s body. The moral self-

concept subscale refers to the examination of oneself from a moral or ethical stance. This

subscale accounts for feelings typically associated with moral worth, feeling like a good

or bad person, and one’s religious satisfaction. Next, the personal self-concept subscale

analyzes the overall self-worth a person believes about him or herself, by addressing how

adequate one feels. The family self-concept subscale addresses the attitudes and beliefs
30

that one has regarding the importance of family, the support one feels one has regarding

family, and if one perceives themselves as being valued as a family member. The social

self-concept subscale addresses the idea of the value a person places on the interaction

one has with others. The subscale also incorporates personal feelings of worth and

adequacy of the social interaction with others. Finally, the academic/work self-concept

subscale is defined by a person’s beliefs about himself or herself in the environment of

school or work. This subscale accounts for how a person views himself or herself in the

school and work environment, and the beliefs one has about how others perceive them

(Fitts & Warren, 1996). .

All of the subscales take into account the individual view a person has of him or

herself, the idea of social relationships, familial relationships, ideas of self worth and

feelings of adequacy, the importance of engaging in work that represents something

meaningful, spirituality, and the idea of morality. Fitts and Warren (1996) stated that a

person’s sense of adequacy or lack of adequacy in the physical, moral, personal, family,

social, and academic/work areas define their total self-concept.

The TSCS-2 has been used to asses self-concept for various ethnic groups. Marsh

and Hattie (1996) stated that the TSCS-2 as a measure of self-concept has no equivalent,

and he further acknowledged that using the instrument with another would allow

researchers to maximize the chances to find relationships between self-concept and other

areas.

Taher (2007) conducted a study in which she analyzed the relationship of self-

concept and the masculinity/femininity scale on the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality

Inventory second edition (MMPI-2). She used a sample of 102 students from the Kuwait
31

University and used a sample of 102 students that were being treated for gender identity

disorder. The researcher gave both samples the MMPI-2 and specifically wanted to

obtain scores on the masculinity and femininity subscales. She also gave the same sample

the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale 2, in order to determine if there was a difference

between the two groups. The researcher found that in fact the self-concept of the sample

that had the diagnosis of gender identity disorder were significantly different from those

who did not. Clinical subscale scores were also elevated for the sample that was

diagnosed for gender identity disorder. In this study, the researcher used the TSCS-2 in

conjunction with the MMPI-2 in order to determine self-concept with an immigrant

religious group.

A study conducted by Dickie, Ajega, Kobylak, and Nixon (2006) looked at the

relationship between attachment style, religion, and self-concept. The researchers

conducted a mixed methods study in which they administered the TSCS-2, a religiosity

scale, and conducted interviews with 132 members of a church. They were interested in

understanding the perceptions the participants had of God. Researchers found that men

viewed God as being more punishing, and women viewed God as being more nurturing.

The perceptions the participants held of God was in direct relation to the perceptions they

had of their parents. Obtaining self-concept scores allowed the researchers to understand

the physical, moral, personal, family, social, academic, and overall self-concept of each

participant. In this study, the researchers used the TSCS-2 with a religious group in order

to examine the relationship of self-concept and religiosity.

Brown (2004) conducted a study that investigated the self-concept and cultural

awareness of pre-service teachers. The researcher was interested specifically in teachers


32

that were going to begin working in urban school districts. One hundred European

American teachers were given the TSCS-2 and also a cultural diversity awareness

inventory. A pre-test/post-test was conducted that included a course in multi-cultural

awareness as the experimental component, and the same participants were given the

TSCS-2 and the cultural diversity awareness inventory again and scores were analyzed.

Findings suggested that self-concept and cultural awareness were in direct relation to

each other. The six subscales of the TSCS-2 were useful in understanding how culturally

aware the pre-service urban teachers were. In this study, the TSCS-2 was used to

understand multicultural awareness.

Heine (2001) conducted a review of the literature pertaining to East Asian self-

concept. The author described several important concepts that were necessary for

understanding the views that East Asians hold of themselves. In the review he found that

East Asians view themselves as changing across situations, finding explanations to

behavior externally, to establishing relationships with other people similar to their own

culture, distancing themselves from people that are not of their cultural origin, and

viewing self-criticism as a method of motivation. The author suggested that in order to

fully understand a person of East Asian descent, one must have a strong understanding of

the culture of origin.

In the studies presented above, the TSCS-2 was used with various groups. The

instrument has broad applicability for the use of determining self-concept. It has been

used with several ethnic and cultural groups, and has been used in the medical and

psychological fields, and in conjunction with other instruments to determine self-concept.

I gave the TSCS-2 (Fitts & Warren, 1996) to participants in order to determine the
33

differences between first generation American born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated

Asian Indian Hindus on the measure of self-concept.

Attitudes Toward Counseling

The literature that specifically addressed the Asian Indian Hindu population

yielded limited results. A majority of the literature that was available described

counseling with Asian Indians without defining the religious affiliation of the sample in

the study (Kim, Ng, & Ahn, 2009; Zhang & Dixon, 2003). Several researchers have

expressed the need to examine the religious affiliation of clients of Asian Indian descent

due to the fact that one of the largest socializing and bonding facets for Asian Indians is

religion (Farvar, Bhadha, & Narang 2002).

Attitude Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale

In the following studies, researchers assessed the attitudes toward seeking

professional psychological help for a number of immigrant groups. The research studies

propose the importance of studying various cultural groups, and provide precedent for the

current proposed study. Also, each of the investigations used the Attitudes Toward

Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale (ATSPPHS), or the Attitudes Toward

Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale Short Form (ATS-SF). In several of the

studies that I examined the researchers assessed the attitudes to seeking psychological

help for various cultural groups and religious groups.

Panova (2007) was interested in determining the attitudes of immigrants from the

former Soviet Union regarding counseling. The researcher also wanted to determine the

levels of acculturation, immigrant generational status, and gender differences (Panova).

There were 179 participants of Russian descent. All were administered the Attitude
34

Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale Short Form (ATS-SF) a language

and demographics instrument created by Fischer and Farina (1995). The researcher found

that there were gender differences in the attitude toward seeking professional help, and

that American Russians were more likely to rate counseling as positive. Further, prior

experience with counseling was a strong predictor of current attitudes toward

psychotherapy.

Mori, Panova, and Zelida (2007) administered the Attitudes Toward Seeking

Professional Psychological Help Scale, created by Fischer and Turner (1970), to Asian

and Hispanic populations. They administered this assessment and others to determine

perceptions the participants had of mental illness to 1143 participants. These researchers

reported that Asians and Hispanics had a negative view of the mentally ill and were less

likely to seek therapy. Also, they found that Hispanic and Asian males were more likely

to refute counseling when compared to females.

Chang (2007) conducted a study in which 961 Chinese students were assessed

using measures of depression, anxiety, and attitudes toward seeking professional

psychological help. In this investigation, the students were given the Beck Depression

Inventory II, the Beck Anxiety Inventory, and the Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional

Psychological Help Scale. The results indicated that Chinese females were more likely to

seek professional psychological help. However, it was also found that elevated levels of

depression had an inverse relationship with seeking professional help. There were gender

differences found, in that, Chinese` males were less likely to seek professional help when

compared to their Chinese female counterparts.


35

The instrument has been used widely and found to have good predictive validity

when determining the attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help of several

cultural groups. In the following section, the ATSPPHS and religious affiliation is

presented.

Khan (2006) conducted a study that sought to provide information about the

attitudes of Muslims towards seeking professional psychological help. In her study she

gave 459 Muslims from various parts of the world such as South Asia, Africa, and the

Middle East, the Attitude Towards Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale

(Fischer & Farina, 1995). It was found in her sample of Muslim participants that Muslim

females were more likely than Muslim males to view counseling as favorable. Also, her

findings revealed that age also had an effect in that the older Muslims had a favorable

view of counseling. In this study, the ATSPPHS was used with Muslims from several

regions of the world.

Al-Darmaki (2003), conducted a study that observed the relationship of the

attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help of students from the United

Arab Emirates. The study also focused on the self-esteem and depression. The researcher

used a sample of student that included both males and females from a university in the

UAE. Specifically, the sample contained 273 females and only 53 males of the Islamic

faith. Moreover, 90% of the sample had never received psychological services. The

study concluded that attitudes toward seeking mental help may in fact be culturally

related. It was found that several factors such as education, family values, and cultural

beliefs impact the attitudes toward psychological help. Al-Darmaki noted that most of the
36

participants in the study would seek help from a medical doctor rather than psychological

services.

Al-Rowaie (2001) conducted a study to determine predictors of attitudes toward

seeking professional psychological help for Kuwait college students. In this study, the

researcher gave 529 subjects five instruments to determine certain characteristics. The

Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale (1970) by Fischer and

Turner and four others were administered to the subjects in the study. The instruments

were designed to measure family and social support, willingness to use community

resources, and stress levels. The researcher utilized these instruments to determine if

Kuwait University students were inclined to seek professional counseling, and the results

revealed that the students were less likely to seek professional psychological help due to

the stigma associated with receiving outside intervention. Women were more likely to

seek professional help, and those subjects who had experience with counseling before

were more likely to have a positive attitude regarding counseling and seeking

professional help.

In the studies described above, the authors were able to use the ATSPPHS with

the Muslim religious population from different countries. The instrument was modified

by changing the English language of the instrument into the native language of the

participants. Further, the ATSPPHS was given to them in conjunction with other

instruments.

Several of the studies mentioned above incorporated the Attitudes Toward

Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale (Fischer & Farina, 1995; Fischer &

Turner, 1970), with other instruments in order to determine attitudes toward seeking help.
37

Various constructs were tested in association with the Attitudes Toward Seeking

Professional Psychological Help Scale such as demographics, emotional openness,

psychological distress, gender, the stigma associated with receiving help, and ethnic

membership. The instrument was recognized to yield results pertaining to the attitudes

toward seeking professional psychological help of several different populations so that

counseling services could be tailored to incorporate the needs of the ethnic minority

groups.

Summary

The studies mentioned above presented misconceptions in the literature regarding

the Hindu population and support the need to conduct research that pertains specifically

to the Hindu population. Also, examples of research that addressed the attitudes of

immigrant populations towards counseling were presented.

The first section of the literature review described various studies that defined

their sample populations as Asians without recognizing cultural and religious affiliation

(Kim, Ng, & Ahn, 2009; Zhang & Dixon, 2003; Constantine, Chen, & Cessay, 1997). In

the next section, Counseling Asian Indian Hindus, important foundational concepts were

presented, studies examining death and reincarnation were reviewed, and research studies

that specifically examined counseling strategies with Hindu clients were presented

(Coogan, 2005; Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Firth, 2005; Juthani, 2001; Kamal &

Loewenthal, 2002; Moodley, 1999; Holaday, Leach, & Davidson, 1994).

Also, the acculturation section presented several studies (Abrahams, 2007; Farvar,

Bhadha, & Narang, 2002; Kaipa, 2008; Sundar, 2008) that explored acculturation with

the Asian Indian population while failing to examine religious affiliation of the
38

participants. Several studies were examined (Farvar, Bhadha, & Narang 2002; Ghuman,

1997; Rao 2007) that addressed acculturation and the importance of religious affiliation

of people that were practicing Hindus.

Moreover, the review outlined the varied uses of the Tennessee Self-Concept

Scale-2 (Fitts & Warren, 2003). This scale has been used in conjunction with various

cultural groups to determine levels of self-concept, and the instrument has also been used

in conjunction with multiple instruments such as personality measures, depression

inventories, and numerous other instruments that measure various constructs to determine

differences between groups (Brown, 2004; Dickie, Ajega, Kobylak, & Nixon 2006;

Heine, 2001; Taher, 2007). The TSCS-2 has varied uses and the subscales cover several

aspects of total self-concept considered important to understanding human functioning.

Finally, studies were reviewed that were related to the utilization of the

ATSPPHS created by Fischer and Turner (1970) with a variety of immigrant groups for

the purposes of determining the attitudes towards counseling. The scale has been

modified for people from different cultural groups such as Dubai, UAE, Kuwait, and

others (Al-Darmaki, 2003; Chang, 2007; Elhai, Schweinle, & Anderson, 2008; Khan,

2006; Panova, 2007; Panova & Zelida, 2007; Robb et. al, 2003; Vogel et. al, 2005;

Wrigley, 2005). This scale has been translated into different languages, and used to assess

attitudes toward seeking counseling for various cultural groups.

In chapter III, I described the reliability and validity of each instrument that I used

with my population, as well as other items in the instrument protocol. Further, I discussed

both qualitative and quantitative methods for data collection as well as analysis. Finally,
39

I discussed aspects pertaining to my population and where I retrieved the population for

my study.
40

CHAPTER III

METHODOLOGY

Chapter III contains a description of participants, setting for the study,

instruments, research design, data collection, and data analysis. In my study I examined

the differences between first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindus and

immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-concept and attitudes

toward counseling. The study was conducted at Hindu Temples in Houston, Texas and

Chicago, Illinois in order to obtain a sample of Hindus from different regions of the

United States.

As indicated in the literature review, research with the Hindu population in the

United States is limited. While acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward

counseling has been measured with various cultural groups, there is a paucity of research

examining the acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling with the Hindu

population. In my study, I explored the following research questions:

1) What are the differences between first generation American born Asian Indian

Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation, self- concept,

and attitudes toward seeking counseling?

2) What is the relationship between length of time in the United States and level

of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling for immigrated Asian

Indian Hindus?

3) What are the perceptions of first generation American born Asian Indian

Hindus about counseling?

4) What are the perceptions of immigrated Asian Indian Hindus about


counseling?
41

Permission to conduct research was obtained from the Sam Houston State

University Department of Research and Special Programs Internal Review Board for the

Protection of Human Subjects. I obtained permission to seek participants and carry out

my research project at the various temples sites. Finally, I obtained written consent from

participants prior to implementing the instrument protocol and interviews (Appendix A).

In the written consent, participants were asked to sign a form that outlines the purpose of

the study, ensures confidentiality of findings, and explains voluntary participation.

Participants were also given the contact information (i.e., phone number and email

address) of my dissertation chair in case they had any questions regarding the study.

Forms and permissions obtained were included in the appendix.

Selection of Participants

Participant inclusion in the current study was based on a specific set of criteria.

Therefore, the sampling scheme for my study was criterion based. The specific criteria

included that all participants: (a) were 18 years of age or older at the time of the study;

(b) were of Asian Indian descent (i.e., with verifiable ancestry in India as self-reported by

participants); (c) were practicing Hindus; and (d) were immigrated Asian Indian Hindu or

a first generation American born Asian Indian Hindu.

Research Design

Creswell (2003) stated that mixed methods research is a relatively new field and

employs obtaining both forms of data (i.e., quantitative and qualitative). Further,

according to Creswell researchers have to be aware of the subtle implications of

conducting mixed methods research and must ask themselves questions such as: (a) What

strategy will be employed for gathering data? (b) how will the data be obtained (order)?
42

and (c) which form of data has priority? Along with these questions, Creswell explained

that one should have a theoretical perspective when conducting mixed methods. For the

purposes of my study, I chose to use a mixed methods sequential nested samples design

with priority given to the quantitative portion. Therefore, I gathered data in a sequential

order (i.e., quantitative data before qualitative). Further, I utilized the mixed methods

approach because the quantitative instruments that I used allowed me to examine

specific constructs (acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking counseling)

while the qualitative portion (semi-structured interview) allowed me to ask more in-depth

questions about perceptions that Asian Indian Hindus have toward counseling. The

qualitative component in essence informed the quantitative component and clarified any

remaining questions I had once I obtained the data. I gave priority to the quantitative

portion because most of my research questions were answered by a comparison of the

results on measures of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking

counseling. However, I obtained rich thick data by conducting interviews in order to

further understand the perceptions of first generation American born Asian Indian Hindus

and Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus toward counseling.

Quantitative Research Component

My participants were first generation American born Asian Indian Hindus and

Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus who are at least 18 years or older. In order to participate

in the study, the subjects, both male and female, were practicing Hindus of Asian Indian

descent with verifiable ancestry in India as self-reported by participants. All

documentation to participate in the study was obtained on site. Participants for the study

were obtained through a variety of methods. I found participants by accessing Hindu


43

temples in Houston, Texas, Chicago, Illinois, and other Hindu community organizations

in Texas and Illinois. Further, I obtained a mailing list with addresses of Hindus active in

temple organizations.

Using G Power statistical software (Faul, 2008) I calculated a moderate effect size

of 0.25 with a power level of 0.8, and found that I needed a sample size of 48 for each

group. My goal was to obtain 100 participants for each group, and obtaining a sample of

100 would yield a power level of 0.9 with an effect size of 0.15. However, I obtained 52

participants for the first generation American born Asian Indian Hindu group that

consisted of an equal amount of males and females. Also, I obtained 56 participants for

the immigrated Asian Indian Hindu group which was comprised of 32 males and 24

females.

Qualitative Research Component

I utilized a criterion-convenient sampling scheme for gathering data (Creswell,

2007; Onwuegbuzie & Collins, 2007). This type of sampling allowed me to choose

specific individuals who defined the essence of the research problem, question, or study,

and met the criteria necessary to be participants in the study (Creswell, 2007; Miles &

Huberman, 1994). I was familiar with the participants as a result of administering the

quantitative instruments (i.e., interview participants will have already taken the SL-ASIA,

TSCS-2, and the ATSPPHS), and I sought an equal number of volunteers from both

groups to participate in the interview (Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2007a).

In my study, I was a participant observer, due mainly to the fact that I am

practicing Hindu, the data is being gathered at a temple that I have attended in the past,

and because I was asking questions as well as observing the volunteering participant’s
44

non-verbal gestures. During the interview, I asked clarification questions. One of my

goals was to avoid biasing the responses of the participant through the use of non-verbal

gestures. Therefore, I attempted to remain as neutral as possible in regards to my

questioning style; however, there were several commonalities between myself and both

the groups regarding religion, societal, and cultural.

During the course of the study, I ensured that the identification of the participants

were protected. Confidentiality was ensured by assigning codes to the participant’s

identity instead of using the participant’s names (Creswell, 2007; Lipson, 1994). I

revealed the purpose of the study, did not engage in any form of deception, and informed

the participants that they do not need to respond to any questions that made them feel

uncomfortable (Creswell; Lipson).

The use of multiple participants was sufficient for addressing the research

questions, and allowed me to use 20 members of one group and 12 members of the other

group (first generation American born Asian Indian Hindus and Immigrated Asian Indian

Hindus) to gather responses (Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2007b). Further, the participants

were members of a Hindu temple, practicing Hindus, and of Asian Indian descent.

Demographic information is provided in chapter 4.

Instrumentation

In my study, I had participants complete an instrument protocol that consisted of

four items. All participants completed a demographics questionnaire (Appendix B), the

Suinn-Lew Asian Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA);(Suinn, Rikard-Figueroa, Lew, &

Vigil, 1987) to assess acculturation (Appendix C), the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale-2

(TSCS-2); (Fitts & Warren, 1996) to assess self-concept (Appendix D), and the Attitude
45

Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale (ATSPPHS); (Fischer and

Turner, 1970), (Appendix E) in order to assess their attitudes toward counseling. In

addition to the instrument protocol Appendix F), I conducted 32 total semi-structured

interviews (20 and 12), in order to assess the perceptions of individuals regarding

counseling.

Demographics Questionnaire

This written form specifically asked the current age, marital status, which Hindu

deity participants primarily worship, birthplace, age at time of immigration, gender,

length of time (in years) living in the United States, and highest level of education

achieved. Some questions had multiple choice answers, while others prompted

participants to specify their response in a write-in blank space.

The Suinn-Lew Asian Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA)

The questionnaire that I used to assess the acculturation level of participants in

my study was a modified version of the questionnaire used by Kaipa (2008) and

Abrahams (2007) originally developed by Suinn, Rikard-Figueroa, Lew, and Vigil

(1987). I modified the latest version and incorporated the change in questions regarding

immigrated versus first generation. The versions used by Kaipa and Abrahams described

first generation Asian Indians as immigrants, whereas in my study I referred to Asian

Indians born in the United States as first generation. Also, the original version was not

created for Asian Indians, but several researchers have used this instrument with Asian

Indians, and found it to be valid and reliable given a few modifications to the questions in

order to specifically address Asian Indians (Abrahams; Kaipa).


46

This instrument has valid and reliable psychometric properties, and has been

reported to be effective for determining acculturation among the Asian population

(Abrahams, 2007; Kapia, 2008, Suinn, Khoo, & Ahuna, 1995). The creators of the

instrument reported Cronbach’s alpha of 0.88 (Suinn et. al, 1995). Abrahams (2007)

reported that other researchers (Choi & Harachi, 2002; Ownbey & Horridge, 1998, Suinn

et. al) used this instrument and reported alpha coefficients which ranged from 0.86 to

0.91. In another study, Suinn et. al reported that after administering the instrument to 324

university students, they were able to obtain a Cronbach’s alpha of 0.79.

The original instrument has 21 questions using a five point Likert scale for

responses. In this instrument, the higher the score a respondent assigns a question, the

greater the likelihood the respondent identifies with the western culture. A score of 3 is

depictive of a person that is bicultural (i.e., adopts qualities from host and parent culture).

Finally, a score of 1 on any question is indicative of a person that identifies with his or

her parent culture (Suinn-Lew, Khoo, & Ahuna, 1995). In my study, I used the original

21 item instrument with modifications to question that incorporated questions that

specifically addressed the Asian Indian population similar to the instrument used by

Kaipa (2008).

The Tennessee Self-Concept Scale 2

The Tennessee Self-Concept Scale (TSCS) was originally developed in the 1960s

by Fitts and Warren (1965). He was working with the Tennessee Department of Mental

Health, and decided to develop a self-concept scale that would allow researchers to

examine the relationship of a person’s self-concept to interpersonal competence,

psychopathology, delinquency and self actualization (Fitts & Warren, 1996).


47

The TSCS has been modified since its creation. In 1988, a new edition of the

measure was created. Basic analysis was done to validate the claims of the original

instrument. In 1993, the TSCS-2 was restructured to accommodate the diversity of the

population that it served and to extend the usage of the test to a broader age range. As a

result, the test was modified using the original normative data (Fitts & Warren, 1996).

After administering the TSCS-2, researchers obtain four sets of validity scores

(inconsistent responding, self-criticism, faking good, and response distribution), six self-

concept scores (physical, moral, personal, family, social, academic/work), three

supplementary scores (identity, satisfaction, and behavior), and summary scores (total

self-concept and conflict) (Fitts & Warren, 1996). As in previous versions, these nine

scores (i.e., self-concept sores & supplementary scores) render a score for the total self-

concept scale, which is used to assess a persons’ overall self-concept.

Fitts and Warren (1996) revisions of the TSCS-2 accounted for variables such as

race, sex, age, education and socioeconomic status. Fitts and Warren found that as a

person’s age increased their self-concept scores increased as well. Scores differed

between people 18 and above and ages 13 through 17; that is, people ages 18 and above

typically had higher self-concept scores when compared to the age group of adolescents

13 through 17.

The TSCS-2 used a larger sample of African Americans and Hispanics as

compared to the original normative data. In the analysis, it was found that overall the

difference, when compared to Caucasian people, was not significant. Fitts and Warren

(1996) clarified that other ethnic groups were not largely represented in the

standardization sample, and that analysis of these groups scores did differ, but they
48

attributed, this to the fact that the sample was relatively small. It was suggested that

further research be conducted to determine if there is a difference in self-concept scores

for various ethnic groups other than African Americans and Hispanics. Also, these

researchers analyzed the effect of education and socio-economic status and found that

there was no significant difference in the responses of high and low socio-economic

status (SES) people. They looked at the education level of the people in this sample and

concluded that those with less than 12 years of education would make up the sample.

According to Fitts and Warren (1996), the TSCS-2 has acceptable reliability and validity

psychometric properties. Internal consistency was determined using the Cronbach’s

alpha. The internal consistency for the adult form respondents varied between 0.73 to

0.95 which was considered appropriate.

The second type of reliability described by Fitts and Warren (1996) was test-retest

reliability. Researchers gave 135 high school students the adult. The adult participants

were given a re-test within one to two weeks of the original. The adult population

reported 0.70 and above on all the self-concept scales with a 0.82 test-retest reliability for

the overall total self-concept. The researchers presented the standard error of

measurement (SEM) ranging between 4.1 and 7.2. The values derived from the test-retest

reliabilities were deemed satisfactory for measuring self-concept (Fitts & Warren, 1996).

The authors of the TSCS-2 reported concurrent validity, construct validity, and

discriminant validity. According to Fitts & Warren (1996), the TSCS-2 has concurrent

validity with several instruments that measure self-concept such as: a) the Wehmer and

Izard (1962) Self Rating Positive Affect Scale (r = 0.68); b) Self-Description

Questionnaire III developed by Marsh and O’Neill (1984), r = 0.71; and c) Piers-Harris
49

Children’s Self-Concept Scale, r = 0.80 (PHCSCS; Piers, 1991). In regards to concurrent

validity, the researchers found that the items on the instrument are useful in measuring

self-concept.

Several studies have been conducted using a factor analysis to establish the

construct validity of the TSCS-2 (Bolton, 1976; Fitts & Warren, 1996; McGuire &

Tinsley, 1981). McGuire and Tinsley (1981) conducted research that used a sample

population of 678 students and 341 male juvenile offenders. After conducting a multiple

group factor analysis the researchers were able to conclude that 80% of the items were

appropriate for determining the several categories of self-concept (i.e., physical, moral,

personal, family, social, academic/work). The authors of the TSCS-2 believe that the

instrument has appropriate construct validity.

Finally, discriminant validity refers to the ability of items that are on a measure to

distinguish different people on certain traits or behaviors. The authors contended that the

items on the TSCS-2 identify differences in the self-concepts of participants. For

instance, Fitts and Warren (1996) compared the TSCS responses of 363 psychiatric

patients with those of non-patients and found that the groups differed significantly on

every TSCS-2 scale.

Fitts and Warren (1996) identified several strengths and a weakness they felt

warranted further exploration before drawing any conclusions. For instance, one of the

strengths is that the test has been in use for forty years and still is being utilized in various

settings. The test is used primarily in clinical, counseling, and research settings to

determine self-concept. Overall, the scale is easy to understand and complete. Further, it
50

is inexpensive, and easy to obtain. Moreover, researchers have restructured the scale

recently to account for diversity.

There is a lack of minority representation in the samples. Roughly 65% of the

sample used was Caucasian, 20% was Black, and 8 % was Hispanic. The remaining

ethnic groups such as Asians and Native Americans were a small portion of the normed

population. They were 2% and 0.6%, respectively (Fitts & Warren).

Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale (ATSPPHS).

The ATSPPHS is used to determine the attitudes of people towards mental health

professionals (Al-Rowaie, 2001). Several researchers have utilized this instrument to

determine the readiness of individuals to seek counseling. This instrument specifically

measures an individual’s perceptions regarding the mental health profession (Al-Rowaie,

2001; Komiya & Eells, 2001; Panova, 2007; Mori, Panova, & Zelida, 2007). This

instrument consists of 29 items, and the instrument was developed by Fischer and Turner

(1970). The questionnaire is used to measure an individual’s perception of mental health

professionals (Mori, Panova, & Zelida, 2007). There are two forms of the instrument, a

shortened 10 item version created by Fischer and Farina (1995) and the original 29 item

version. I will use the 29 item version in my study.

Of the 29 items, 11 items are worded positively and 18 are stated negatively (Al-

Rowaie, 2001). The questionnaire design utilizes a four point Likert scale with choices

ranging from (0) strongly disagree, (1) disagree, (2) agree, and (3) strongly agree

(Komiya & Eells, 2001). This instrument has been utilized in numerous studies with

different immigrant groups (Al-Rowaie, 2001; Komiya & Eells, 2001; Panova, 2007;

Mori, Panova, & Zelida, 2007). Responses from the 29 items are grouped into four
51

subscales that determine: (a) the recognition of personal need for psychological help; (b)

tolerance of the stigma associated with psychological help; (c) interpersonal openness;

and, (d) confidence in mental health professionals (Al-Rowaie, 2001; Panova, 2007;

Mori, Panova, & Zelida, 2007)

The subscale scores, as well as the total scores, are computed to determine the

attitudes of the participants that have completed the instrument. Further, positive attitudes

are represented by higher scores on the subscales and the total score.

The internal reliability of the measure is reported to be 0.83 and the test-retest

reliability ranges from 0.89 administered five days later to 0.73 administered two months

later (Mori, Panova, & Zelida 2007). Al-Rowaie (2001) reported the reliability of the four

subscales to be: (a) Recognition for personal need for professional help (r = 0.67), (b)

tolerance of stigma associated with psychological help (r = 0.70), (c) interpersonal

openness (r = 0.62), and (d) confidence in the mental health professional (r = 0.74).

These findings were presented in numerous (e.g., Al-Rowaie, 2001; Komiya & Eells,

2001) studies that used the Fischer and Turner (1970) 29 item instrument, and also in a

more recent study by Fischer and Farina (1995).

The attitude scale has been found to discriminate between those who favor

psychological intervention and those who do not. According to several authors (Ang,

Lau, Tan, & Lim, 2007; Fischer & Farina, 1970; Khan, 2006; Masuda et al., 2005),

higher scores are indicative of positive attitudes toward seeking professional counseling

versus lower scores indicating negative attitudes toward seeking professional counseling.
52

Semi-Structured Interview Protocol

I used a single instrument consisting of seven open-ended questions (Appendix F)

for the qualitative portion of my study, and used the interview method as opposed to

conducting survey research. In order to obtain rich thick data, I gathered as much

information as possible that would adequately describe the topic (Creswell, 2007; Lincoln

& Guba, 1985). A goal of mine was to obtain information from the participants without

placing too many constraints on the ability of the participants to respond freely and,

therefore, closed-ended questions were not used (Miles & Huberman, 1994). Also, the

semi-structured nature of the interview and the use of pre-designed open-ended questions

allowed me the flexibility to guide the focus of my study (Miles & Huberman).

According to Adler and Adler (1987), in this current study I was an active

member. An active member participates in the core activities but does not commit to the

goals and values of the participants (Adler & Adler).

The interviews occurred at Hindu temples in Houston, Texas, and Chicago,

Illinois. Information mailing addresses and email addresses of congregation members

were obtained through the temple organizations. The settings of the interviews were

informal and lasted approximately 7 to 13 minutes. Moreover, the participants were asked

a single question, given time to respond, and then presented with another question until

all the questions were answered. During the interview, I asked clarification questions in

order to obtain richer data (Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2007a)

Data Collection

For my study, I used a sequential mixed method design using nested samples

(Collins, Qnwuegbuzie, & Jiao, 2006). The sequential mixed method design is defined as
53

the mixing of both quantitative and qualitative methods and techniques in a single

research study that allows the researcher to strengthen his or her findings for quantitative

component over the qualitative component or vice-versa (Collins, Onwuegbuzie, &

Sutton, 2006; Johnson Onwuegbuzie, 2004; Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2004; Walker,

2007). There are two aspects that a person must take into account when deciding to use

mixed methods. The first is time orientation (i.e., at what phases will the quantitative and

qualitative data collection occur). The second is the relationship between the samples

used for both phases of the study (Collins, Onwuegbuzie, & Jiao, 2006; Onwuegbuzie &

Johnson, 2006).

In the second phase, the researcher must determine if the samples for both phases

of the study are identical, parallel, nested or multilevel (Collins, Onwuegbuzie, & Jiao).

In my study I used a sequential mixed method design with a nested sample. A nested

sample includes administration of the quantitative phase of the research study, and then

conducting interviews with participants that completed the quantitative phase of the study

(Collins, Onwuegbuzie, & Jiao). For the qualitative phase of my study, I conducted semi-

structured interviews with participants that had completed the quantitative portion (i.e.,

SL-ASIA, TSCS-2, and ATSPPHS) and that voluntarily agreed to participate in the semi-

structured interview. For my sample, 20 participants from the first generation American

born Asian Indian Hindus group were interviewed and 12 participants from the

Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus group were interviewed.

Further, this research design was useful when collecting data because it allowed

the researcher to establish a sequence in the collection of data and basically one form of

data (quantitative) informs the other (qualitative); (Collins, Onwuegbuzie, & Jiao, 2006;
54

Walker, 2007). For example, a researcher can collect quantitative data prior to

conducting interviews. This process allowed me to further enhance and validate the

findings from the quantitative portion of my study, commonly referred to as triangulation

(Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2006). Triangulation is defined as the process of validating

findings based on various forms of data (i.e., observation, instruments administered) and

data collection (Creswell, 2005; Creswell 2007, Onwuegbuzie & Leech; Walker).

I used multiple forms of data and data collection by administration of the

instruments, conducting the semi-structured interview, using the member-checking

procedure, conducting a peer debriefing interview with a member from a previous

doctoral cohort that conducted a similar study, and by using statistical software for both

phases of the study (i.e., QSR NVIVO Version 7 and SPSS Version 16.0); (QSR

International Pty. Ltd, 2006; SPSS, Inc, 2007). By utilizing several different strategies for

data and data collection, I was able to achieve triangulation of the data, which is also an

important essential component of mixed-method research (Creswell 2005/2007;

Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2006; Walker, 2007).

Quantitative Data Collection

I gathered data in person from a religiously homogenous sample at Hindu temple

locations across Houston, Texas and Chicago Illinois. I sought approval from Sam

Houston State University’s IRB, and all procedures were followed that are set forth in the

APA ethical guidelines for conducting research with human subjects.

When administering the quantitative portion of my study, I read a scripted

introduction, participant rights information sheet, and a scripted explanation of the

purpose of the study. Also, I distributed informed consent forms and had the forms
55

signed, dated, and returned. I read the informed consent portion to the participants in my

study. The protocol was only given to the participants once I had collected the informed

consent signed and dated by the participants. The protocol included a demographic

information questionnaire, the Suinn-Lew Asian Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA; Suinn

et. al, 1987), the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale-2 (Fitts & Warren, 1996), and the

Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional Help Scale (Fischer & Turner, 1970).

Qualitative Data Collection

Following the quantitative portion of the study, I conducted several interviews

with participants that had completed the quantitative portion of my study. I requested that

members from each group voluntary participate in the semi-structured interview. My goal

was to obtain 10 members from each group for a total of 20 interviews. However, I

surpassed these numbers by conducting 20 first generation and 12 immigrated interviews.

Data was gathered using the interview process. The interview was recorded and

transcribed. An Olympus digital voice recorder was used to record and transcribe the

interview. Interviewing and observing was critical and important aspects in gathering

data for the study (Creswell, 2007; Spradley, 1980).

The research paradigm I chose for my study was social constructionism for the

qualitative portion of the study. This paradigm emphasizes the view of the individual in

constructing his or her own reality. I conducted the study with the intent to gain an

understanding of a concept (e.g., differences among two groups on measures of

acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling) from the participants’ views,

and I was able to create a narrative from the experiences of the participants (Stake, 2005).

Further, the open-ended format for the questions allowed the participants the flexibility to
56

respond freely and openly. I used a qualitative form of analysis (i.e., constant comparison

analysis, and classical content analysis), and I used legitimation techniques (Creswell,

2007). I conducted a member checking procedure to ensure that the comments made by

the participants were accurate. I also conducted a debriefing interview with a member of

a previous doctoral cohort that conducted a similar study and these findings are presented

in the legitimation section. Transcripts are provided in appendix L.

Legitimation Strategies. Legitimation strategies involved peer review regarding

the data collected and a debriefing interview with a researcher that conducted a similar

study. I employed methods such as member checking to legitimize the transcriptions of

the interview, and finally the data collection process involved not only the words and

contexts but also multiple types of observations (i.e., proxemic, paralinguistic,

chronemic, kinesic); (Fontana & Frey, 2005). Observational data such as the kinesic,

proxemic, chronemic, and paralinguistic demeanors of the participant was gathered

during the interview by observing the participants facial features and body language

during the interview process (Fontana & Frey, 2005). The proxemic refers to the position

of the participants. Speech patterns were observed and recorded such as the pacing of the

speech, the pitch, volume, and consistency. The body movements and other non-verbal

communication such as eye-contact were observed as well. Finally, the interviewee’s

paralinguistic demeanors were noted. Themes that emerged as a result of data analysis

were accomplished iterative (Constas, 1992).

Threats to legitimacy and justification were assessed during the course of the

study (Miles & Huberman, 1994). I analyzed internal and external threats to the

legitimation of the findings. In the following paragraphs, internal and external credibility
57

threats to legitimation are discussed, followed by techniques I utilized to increase

legitimation. Internal credibility refers to how credible the findings are of a study, and is

similar to internal replication in quantitative research (Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2007c).

Also, external credibility refers to how generalizable the findings of a study are to a

different population (Onwuegbuzie & Leech).

Threats to Internal Credibility. Internal credibility threats such as, authenticity,

credibility, neutrality, descriptive validity, researcher bias and voluptuous legitimation of

the findings were investigated (Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2007c). Analyzing threats such as

credibility and authenticity provided a basis to determine if the findings of the research

are legitimate, credible, and authentic (Miles & Huberman, 1994). The issue of truth in

the findings, credibility of reported data, and importance of the data were important to

research, and therefore required attention. Further, researcher bias was another threat to

internal credibility that emphasizes the role of the researcher (Miles & Huberman).

Neutrality was of utmost importance when reporting results, conducting interviews, and

presenting material without bias. In this study, neutrality was maintained by the

researcher and steps were taken to ensure limited researcher bias. For instance, the

questions were designed by professors in the counselor education field, and the same

professors chose the ordering of the questions.

Moreover, the interview procedure occurred as follows: (a) I asked a question; (b)

I allotted the participants time to answer the question completely; and (c) finally, I asked

clarification questions based on the participant’s answers. Descriptive validity was

another threat to internal credibility that addresses the issue of accuracy in the

transcription (Onwuegbuzie & Leech). Member checking was conducted to increase


58

legitimation. Researcher bias was another threat to internal credibility that occurs when

the researcher has personal biases and unconsciously transfers them to the participant

(Onwuegbuzie & Leech). For example, the researcher of the current study is of the same

cultural and religious background of the participants that were interviewed. As a result, in

my study, the participants could have possibly biased their responses to show themselves

in a favorable manner. However, I conducted a member checking procedure, after

conducting a constant comparison analysis and classical content analysis, for the

qualitative portion of the study to ensure that such threats were limited (Sharma, 2008).

Threats to External Credibility. The external credibility threats to legitimation

of transferability, interpretive validity, reactivity, and order bias were investigated during

the course of the study (Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2007c). Transferability of the findings

represented the ability to generalize the findings of a study to other contexts (Miles &

Huberman, 1994). In my study, the participants were Hindus of Asian Indian descent;

therefore, their experiences and findings of the study only apply to the Hindus of Asian

Indian descent.

Interpretive validity was another threat to external credibility which referred to

the extent that the interpretations of the findings were representative of the group in a

study (Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2007c). I conducted two forms of member checking to

ascertain that the interpretations were correct and increased interpretive validity. The

original member checking procedure was performed following the initial interview to

assess the transcription for accuracy. A follow-up member checking was conducted after

the constant comparison analysis and classical content analysis had been conducted

(Sharma, 2008). The member checking procedure occurred over the phone and via e mail.
59

I sent the participants their transcriptions asked them to review them to ensure that the

transcriptions were accurate. Further, I contacted each participant via telephone and

explained to them the findings from my constant comparison analysis and classical

content analysis. In our meeting, I presented the participants with the analysis, the list of

themes, and provided an explanation of the themes and sub-themes. Once the participants

approved of the themes and sub-themes, the participants and I discussed the significance

of each theme and sub-theme as it pertained to the participant’s group membership. This

procedure of member checking increased the interpretive validity by validating the

interpretations made by the researcher in regard to the participants in the study (Sharma,

2008).

Reactivity was another threat to external credibility as a result of the novelty

effect (Onwuegbuzie & Leech, 2007c). For example, during the interview, the

participants responses were recorded; and as a result, the participants may not have

wanted to reveal as much detail about their life as they may have without the presence of

the digital voice recorder (i.e., novelty item). To ensure that the external credibility threat

of reactivity did not influence the participant’s responses, I conducted a member

checking to increase legitimation which was not recorded. Finally, order bias was another

threat to external credibility that was taken into account to ensure that the orders in which

the questions are asked do not influence the confirmability of the findings (Onwuegbuzie

& Leech). I discussed possible bias as a result of the order the questions were asked with

my dissertation chair as well as committee members.

Authenticity and credibility was established by conducting an interview of

multiple participants, conducting member checking, and by conducting a debriefing


60

interview with a member of a previous doctoral cohort that had conducted a similar

study. Credibility of the findings was established when the researcher conducted the

process of member checking. The researcher allowed the participants in the study to

analyze the transcribed interview and provide feedback. Feedback consisted of

authenticating the meaning of phrases in the transcription and allowing the participant to

verify the accuracy of the statements (Miles & Huberman, 1994). Verification procedures

such as leaving an audit trail and using rich thick descriptions were also used for

transferability purposes. These procedures involved taking extensive field notes. In

particular, the thick descriptions increased the ability of others to replicate the study

(Creswell, 2007; Lincoln & Guba, 1985).

I conducted a peer debriefing interview. A peer researcher from a previous

doctoral cohort who conducted a similar study interviewed me. The peer debriefing

technique allowed me to asses my personal bias towards the participants, and also to

understand the effects the participants had on me (Leech, Onwuegbuzie, & Collins,

2008). By conducting the peer interview, I was able to discuss openly my expectations of

the interview process, and also the feelings that I had during the process (Leech et al.). In

effect, the peer debriefing is a cathartic release for the researcher (Leech et al.). The peer

debriefing interview revealed that I assumed to know many of the responses prior to

conducting the interview because of the shared cultural and religious group membership,

but it also allowed me to discuss how I tried to remain neutral and as ethical as possible

during and after the interview were conducted.


61

Data Analysis

There were two types of data analysis used in my study. For the quantitative

phase data obtained from the participants involved tabulating scores by hand for the

Suinn-Lew Asian Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA), and by inputting the results of the

instruments for each question into SPSS, Version 16.0 statistical software (SPSS, Inc,

2007) for the Attitude Toward Seeking Professional Psychological Help Scale. Further,

the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale Score Sheets were tabulated electronically through

software provided by the creator of the instrument. A Multivariate Analysis of Variance

(MANOVA) was conducted in order to determine the differences between first

generation American born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus for

three variables (acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling). For

research question 2, I used correlational inferential statistics (Grinnell, 2008), which

allowed me to determine if a relationship existed between the length of time in the United

States and the three constructs (acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward

counseling) within the immigrated Asian Indian Hindu population. In the second phase, I

conducted semi-structured interviews and obtained other forms of data in order to

validate the claims and assertions that I made after conducting a constant comparison

analysis and classical content analysis.

Quantitative Data Analysis

SPSS, Version 16.0 statistical software was used in order to analyze the data

(SPSS, Inc, 2007). This software allowed me to analyze the data and answer the

following research questions:


62

1) What are the differences between first generation American born Asian Indian

Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation, self- concept

and attitudes toward seeking counseling?

and

2) What is the relationship between length of time in the United States and level

of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling for immigrated Asian

Indian Hindus?

Research Question 1. A MANOVA was used to determine if a difference existed

between American Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of

acculturation, self-concept and attitudes toward seeking counseling. The MANOVA

allowed me to obtain score means and standard deviations in order to make comparisons

between first generation American born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian

Indian Hindus on measures of: (a) acculturation; (b) self-concept; and (c) attitudes toward

seeking professional counseling.

Research Question 2. I used correlational inferential statistics (Grinnell, 2008),

and elected to conduct the Pearson Product-Moment Correlation Coefficient (i.e., the

Pearson r). The Pearson r value can suggest a statistically significant or insignificant

relationship between the length of time in the United States and the three constructs.

Based on the results of the Pearson r correlation, I was able to determine whether there

was a small, moderate or large effect size. In each of the correlations that I conducted,

the Pearson r results indicated whether there was statistically significant relationship

(positive or negative) between the length of time in the United States and the three
63

constructs (i.e., acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling). The results

of the Pearson r are presented in Chapter IV, as well as descriptive statistics such as the

mean, frequency, standard deviation, and the total number of participants.

Qualitative Data Analysis

Participants were also interviewed using a semi-structured interview

questionnaire. The instrument protocol included seven questions that allowed me to

determine the perceptions of the attitudes toward counseling for both American Hindus

and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus. Analysis of the responses involved a constant

comparison analysis followed by a classical content analysis. Software that was used for

analysis was QSR NVIVO Version 7 (QSR International Pty. Ltd., 2006).

I gathered data in several ways. For example, the origination component that I

used for the development of the categories was investigative (Constas, 1992). Due to the

nature of the study, I developed categories as a result of the findings from the interviews

only (Constas). A single verification procedure was applied. The participative verification

procedure was conducted by allowing the participants to review, alter, or agree with the

findings of the study and was accomplished a posteriori (Constas). Finally, I nominated

the categories after the research had begun and the nomination was accomplished

iterative (Constas). I conducted a constant comparative analysis in order to develop the

themes and sub- themes (Leech & Onwuegbuzie, 2007), and I analyzed the context in

which the words were used for the development of themes.

All categories will be identified iterative. I established the categories after

conducting the constant comparative analysis. This analysis can be used for this study

because it has been modified for multiple case participant studies that only conduct a
64

single round of interviews (Leech & Onwuegbuzie, 2007). I used a computer software

program to develop the themes and sub-themes QSR NVIVO Version 7 (QSR

International Pty. Ltd., 2006). During the analysis, I read through the transcript and

highlighted the main phrases that had importance and meaningful significance in order to

answer or clarify my research questions. In order to select the phrases, I looked for

contextual clues of importance and phrases that had significant meaning to the

participants. Next, the data were chunked into phrases, and meaningful codes were used

for the identification of the phrases (Leech & Onwuegbuzie). Finally, a comparison of all

coded phrases was conducted to look for similarities in codes to develop themes.

Once the themes and sub-themes were established, I had my findings reviewed by

the participants (e.g., member checking). The participants approved of the themes and

sub-themes and agreed with the researcher’s assertions and findings (Janesick, 2000;

Leech & Onwuegbuzie). Member checking of the themes and sub-themes allowed me to

make inferences about the participant’s comments with more confidence. Further, the

process increased legitimation by reducing incorrect interpretations, thereby reducing

researcher bias.

Classic content analysis was also used to identify codes. All codes were identified

a posteriori. I established the codes before conducting the classical content analysis by

conducting the constant comparison analysis. This analysis was used for the current study

to determine the number of times a particular code was used, and as a result, the

researcher was able to determine codes and concepts that were important to the

participants, and provided numerical information as to the number and percentage of the

sample that made statements pertaining to the categories (Leech & Onwuegbuzie, 2007).
65

During the analysis, and after conducting the constant comparison analysis, I used QSR

NVIVO Version 7 (QSR International Pty. Ltd, 2006) and determined the number of

times a code was used and presented these findings in percentage form in Chapter 4. To

select and code the information in the transcript, I searched for contextual clues and the

frequency of important terms (Leech & Onwuegbuzie,). Finally, I counted the number of

times statements defined certain codes and provided percentage equivalents for a

comparison between both groups (i.e., immigrant Asian Indian Hindus andfirst

generation American born Asian Indian Hindus). I triangulated data by utilizing multiple

forms of data analysis, conducting two member checking procedures, and a debriefing

interview (Leech & Onwuegbuzie, 2007).

These analyses allowed me to answer the following research questions:

3) What are the perceptions of first generation born American born Asian Indian

Hindus about counseling?

4) What are the perceptions of immigrated Asian Indian Hindus about

counseling?

Summary

Specifically, in my study, I examined the differences between first-generation

American-born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures

of acculturation, self-concept and attitudes toward counseling. My goal was to increase

the literature that specifically pertains to Asian Indian Hindus, and contribute to the

literature available for mental health practitioners that work with Asian Indian Hindus.

In this section, the procedures were described that allowed me to collect the data.

I chose the sequential quantitative-qualitative analysis mixed-method design. Also, with


66

respect to the design in my study, I used a nested sample. Furthermore, areas such as

participants, instrumentation, data collection, data analysis, and the design of the study

were discussed in- depth. Other areas that were discussed in detail included the

demographics of the sample, the sampling scheme for both phases of the research study,

the order in which the study was carried out, validity and reliability properties of the

instruments, the questions and administration of the semi-structured interviews, and

legitimation strategies.
67

CHAPTER IV

RESULTS

In this study, I examined the differences between first-generation American-born

Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation,

self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling. This study was conducted using a mixed-

methods approach (i.e., quantitative followed by qualitative). Quantitative data was

obtained from 108 participants, and 32 interviews were conducted to obtain the

qualitative data.

In order to answer my research questions, I used a sequential mixed-methods

design using nested samples (Collins et al., 2006). The sequential mixed-methods design

is defined as the combination of both quantitative and qualitative methods and techniques

in a single research study so as to strengthen the breadth and explanatory power of the

findings (Collins et al., 2006; Johnson & Onwuegbuzie, 2004; Onwuegbuzie & Leech,

2004; Walker, 2007).

Research Questions

The following research questions were addressed in my study:

1. What are the differences between first-generation American-born Asian

Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-

concept, and attitudes toward seeking counseling?

2. What is the relationship between length of time in the U.S. and level of

acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling for immigrated Asian Indian

Hindus?
68

3. What are the perceptions of first-generation American born-Asian Indian

Hindus about counseling?

4. What are the perceptions of immigrated Asian Indian Hindus about

counseling?

In the following sections, I provide demographic data and analysis of the data for

each group of participants. Next, I present the results of the responses offered by

participants on the three instruments (SL-ASIA, TSCS-2, and ATSPPHS) used to collect

data for research questions 1 and 2. The presentation of these findings is followed by the

results of the statistical analyses used to evaluate participant responses. Finally, I provide

the results for research questions 3 and 4. The sections are divided according to the type

of analyses used (i.e., quantitative and qualitative).

Demographic Data

The sample population in this study consisted of two groups: first-generation

American-born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus. In this

section, I describe each group according to gender, age range, marital status, primary

reincarnations, primary languages, and education level.

Demographic Data for First-Generation American-Born Asian Indian Hindu Group

and Immigrated Asian Indian Hindu Group

The first generation American-born Asian Indian Hindu group contained 52

participants, including 26 males and 26 females ranging in age from 18 to 47. Of the 52

participants, 37 participants had never been married, 14 participants were currently

married, one person reported being separated, and none of the participants reported being

divorced. The immigrated Asian Indian Hindu group was composed of 56 participants,
69

with 32 males and 24 females ranging in age from 19 to 69. The individuals in this group

included 18 participants who had never been married, 34 participants who were currently

married, one participant who was separated, and one participant who was divorced.

With regard to the primary reincarnation that the participants worshipped, the

first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindu group identified the following: (a)

All, (b) Krishna, (c) Shiva, (d) Vishnu, (e) Luxmi, (f) Ganesh, (g) Durga, (h) Hanuman,

(i) Ram, and (j) Swami Narayan. For the immigrated Asian Indian Hindu group, members

worshipped the following primary reincarnations: (a) All, (b) Krishna, (c) Shiva, (d)

Vishnu, (e) Ganesh, (f) Durga, (g) Hanuman; (h) Ram, (i) Sai-Baba, (j) Venkateshwara,

and (k) Budha 9th Avatar (Table 1).


70

Table 1

Primary Reincarnations Worshipped by First-Generation American-Born Asian Indian

Hindus (FGG) and Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus (IG)

FGG, n = IG, n = 56

Reincarnation worshipped 52

All 5 7

Krishna 20 14

Shiva 3 7

Vishnu 9 2

Luxmi 1 0

Ganesh 3 8

Durga 6 5

Hanuman 3 2

Ram 1 5

Swami Naryaan 1 0

Sai-Baba 0 1

Venkateshwara 0 4

Budha 9th Avatar 0 1

Participants in the first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindu group were

asked to identify their native languages. Responses included the following: (a) English,

(b) Hindi, (c) Nepali, (d) Gujrati, (e) Punjabi, (f) Maharati, and (g) Marwadi. The

immigrated Asian Indian Hindu group members reported the following languages: (a)

Hindi, (b) Tamil, (c) Nepali, (d) Kanada, (e) Malyalum, (f) Gujarati, (g) Punjabi, (h)
71

Maharati, (i) Telugu, and (j) Oriya (Table 3). The immigrated group spoke a slightly

wider range of different languages when compared with the first-generation American-

born Asian Indian Hindus; however, English was not listed as a native language.

Table 2

Primary Language of First-Generation American-Born Asian Indian Hindus (FGG) and

Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus (IG)

Languages FGG, n = 52 IG, n = 56

English 21 0

Hindi 8 12

Nepali 1 8

Gujarati 17 5

Punjabi 2 1

Maharati 1 8

Marwadi 2 0

Tamil 0 5

Kanada 0 1

Malyalum 0 2

Telugu 0 13

Oriya 0 1

Finally, the participants of both groups were asked to identify their level of

education. They could select one of the following choices: high school, some college,

college, postgraduate degree, or other. Their answers are summarized in Table 3.


72

Table 3

Education Level of First-Generation American-Born Asian Indian Hindus (FGG) and

Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus (IG)

Post-
Group High Some graduate
membership n school college College degree Other
First-
generation
American-
52 3 12 24 13 0
born Hindu

Immigrated
56 2 2 17 35 0
Hindu

From the information obtained from the demographics questionnaire, I

determined that the participants found value in education, spoke at least two languages

(i.e., a native language and English), and worshipped a diverse number of reincarnations.

In the next section, I discuss the results of my study and describe the differences between

the two groups on measures of acculturation, self-concept, and attitude toward seeking

counseling. Further, I describe my findings as they pertain to the relationship between

length of time spent in the U.S. and the level of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes

toward seeking counseling for the immigrated Asian Indian Hindu group.

Results for Quantitative Analysis

Results for Research Question 1: What are the differences between first-

generation American-born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian

Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking

counseling? For research question 1, I elected to conduct a 2 x 3 multiple analysis of

variance (MANOVA) to determine the differences between two groups (i.e., first-generation
73

Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus) on measures of acculturation,

self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking counseling.

In order to meet the assumptions of the MANOVA I had to verify that (a) the data

were normally distributed; (b) variances and covariances were equal; and (c) the constructs

that I was examining were related. Therefore, prior to conducting the MANOVA, I conducted

a Kolomogrov-Smrinov test of normality, Levene’s and Box’s tests of equality, and Bartlett’s

test of sphericity.

The Kolomogrov-Smrinov test of normality revealed that all constructs had p > 0.05,

with the exception of the immigrated group’s attitude toward seeking counseling. Therefore, I

assumed that the data were normally distributed. The acculturation and self-concept results

were normally distributed, but attitudes toward seeking counseling were not normally

distributed; however, since I had obtained a large sample size I was able to use the

MANOVA.

After conducting the Kolomogrov-Smrinov test of normality, I conducted Levene’s

test and Box’s test in order to examine the homogeneity of variance and covariance. I

determined that all values were statistically significant at p > 0.05, indicating that variances

were normally distributed. Therefore, I concluded that there was equal variance and

covariance among the data.

Finally, I conducted Bartlett’s test of sphericity in order to examine the

relationship between the constructs I had chosen to examine. I found that the constructs

of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking professional counseling had p

< 0.05. Therefore I was able to reject the assumption of using separate tests and utilize a

2 x 3 MANOVA.
74

Because each of the assumptions was met, I conducted a 2 x 3 MANOVA instead of

an independent T-test or other non-parametric procedures in order to determine the

differences between the two groups with regard to the three constructs (acculturation, self-

concept, and attitudes toward seeking counseling). A MANOVA was warranted because (a)

data were normally distributed; (b) the variance and covariance were equal for each group;

(c) a sufficiently large sample size had been obtained; (d) the MANOVA increases the

ability to find significance and increases power. Means and standard deviations are

provided in Tables 4, 5, and 6, accordingly, for each instrument (i.e., SL-ASIA, TSCS-2, and

ATSPPHS) for both groups of participants.

Table 4

Means and Standard Deviations for Suinn-Lew Asian Self-Identity

Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA)

Group Membership n M SD

First-generation American-born
Asian Indian Hindus 52 3.00 0.31
Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus 56 2.22 0.34

Table 5

Means and Standard Deviations for Tennessee Self Concept Scale-2

(TSCS-2)

Group membership n M SD

First-generation American-born
Asian Indian Hindus 52 49.71 10.00
Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus 56 52.78 7.68
75

Table 6

Means and Standard Deviations for Attitudes Toward Seeking

Psychological Help Scale (ATSPPHS)

Group membership n M SD

First-generation American-born
Asian Indian Hindus 52 53.17 8.74
Immigrated Asian Indian Hindus 56 53.35 9.96

Overall, the results of the MANOVA revealed a difference between the two

groups on at least one construct. Upon further investigation, I discovered a statistically

significant difference between the groups on the construct of acculturation (Hotelling’s

trace F (3, 104) = 153.19, p = .0001) with a large effect size according to Cohen’s (1998)

criteria (η2 = .59). Further, the MANOVA test revealed no statistically significant

difference between the two groups on the constructs of self-concept (Hotelling’s trace F

(3, 104) = 3.24, p = .075) and attitudes toward seeking professional counseling (Hotelling’s

trace F (3, 104) = .010, p = 0.919). Table 7 illustrates results for the MANOVA.

Table 7

Results for the MANOVA Comparing Acculturation, Self-Concept, and

Attitudes Toward Counseling

Constructs F p

Acculturation 153.19 .0001**


Self-Concept 3.23 .075
Attitude Toward Counseling .01 .919
** p < .0001
76

Results for Research Question 2: What is the relationship between length of

time in the United States and level of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes

toward counseling for immigrated Asian Indian Hindus? Prior tests of normality (i.e.,

Kolomogrov-Smirnov, Levene’s and Box’s tests, and Bartlett’s test of sphericity)

conducted at the outset of the MANOVA analysis indicated that the data were distributed

normally, that variances and covariances were roughly equal for each group, and that

assumptions for sphericity were met. Therefore, I calculated the Pearson product-moment

correlation coefficient (i.e., the Pearson r) to determine whether the constructs (i.e.,

acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling) were correlated with the

participants’ length of time in the United States. I performed the Bonferroni adjustment to

counterbalance and maintain statistical significance (.05 / 3 = .02) due to the multiple

correlations I conducted.

The Pearson r values indicated no statistically significant relationship between the

length of time in the United States and the three constructs (acculturation, r (56) = 0.25, p

= 0.06; self-concept, r (56) = 0.10, p = 0.43; and attitude toward seeking counseling, r

(56) = 0.15, p = 0.25) among my sample population of immigrated Asian Indian Hindus.

In my study, I found no relationship between any of the three constructs and the length of

time spent in the United States for immigrated Asian Indian Hindus.

Acculturation. Suinn et al. (1987) created a scale to measure acculturation. These

authors defined acculturation levels as low (1), bi-cultural (2), or high (3). The instrument

included 21 items with five answer choices (ranging from 1 to 5). Participants circled the

statement that they agreed with the most. For example, question 13, “Where were you

raised?” was followed by five answer choices: (1) In India only; (2) Mostly in India,
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some in U.S.; (3) Equally in India and U.S.; (4) Mostly in U.S., some in India; and (5) In

U.S. only. After participants completed all 21 items of the instrument, I added the

numerical values of the circled answer choices and then divided this number by 21 in

order to obtain a mean score that correlated with the pre-determined levels of

acculturation (i.e., 1 = 0 – 1.99 M; 2 = 2.00 – 4.00 M; 3 ≥ 4.00 M). Table 8 presents the

data that revealed the level of acculturation for both groups. Seventy-seven percent of the

immigrated group participants were identified as being bicultural and 23% as having low

acculturation. For the first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindu group, all of

the respondents were found to be bicultural.

Table 8

Acculturation (SL-ASIA) Scores and Percent Distribution

Immigrant group 1st-generation


SL-ASIA n = 56 n = 52

1 – Low acculturation 13 (23%) 0 (0%)


2 – Bicultural 43 (77%) 52 (100%)
3- High acculturation 0 (0%) 0 (0%)

Self-Concept. The TSCS-2 (Fitts & Warren, 1996) instrument was analyzed

using computer software. This process required that I input response selections for all 108

participants on all 82 items of the instrument. The findings indicated that the majority of

the respondents from both groups (i.e., first-generation American-born Asian Indian

Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus) scored within the average range for their

self-concept (i.e., Average = T 41-59); specifically, 77% and 75%, respectively, of the

groups had average self-concept. Furthermore, 14% of the immigrated group and 7% of

the first-generation group had high self-concept scores (i.e., High = T 60-69). In the
78

immigrated Asian Indian Hindu group, 4% of the participants obtained very high self-

concept scores (i.e., High = T 60-69) as compared to 2% of the first-generation

American-born Asian Indian Hindu group. Finally, 4% of the first-generation participants

reported very low self-concept scores (i.e. Very Low ≤ T 30), while none of the

immigrated participants feel into this category (see Table 9).

Table 9

Self-Concept (TSCS-2) Scores and Percent Distribution

Immigrant group 1st-generation


TSCS-2 T Scores n = 56 n = 52
Very Low
<30 0 (0%) 2 (4%)

Low
31-40 4 (7%) 5 (10%)

Average
41-59 42 (75%) 40 (77%)

High
60-69 8 (14%) 4 (7%)

Very High
>70 2 (4%) 1 (2%)

ATSPPHS. In order to explain the results of the ATSPPHS, I created groups of

scores and assigned a range of categories. Higher scores are indicative of more positive

attitudes toward seeking counseling (Fischer & Farina, 1995; Al-Darmaki, 2003; Chang,

2007; Elhai et al., 2008; Khan, 2006; Panova, 2007; Panova & Zelida, 2007; Robb et al.,

2003; Vogel et. al, 2005; Wrigley, 2005). To analyze the results of this instrument, the

researcher must reverse the scoring of the 18 negatively worded items. Total scores can
79

range from 0 to 87. Table 10 shows the percentage differences between the two groups

regarding their attitudes toward seeking counseling, based on the range of scores.

The participant responses for both groups indicated generally negative attitudes toward

professional counseling. Sixty-six percent of the immigrated Asian Hindu participants

and 48% of the first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindu participants scored

between 0 and 52 on this instrument. On the other hand, 20% of the immigrated Asian

Hindu participants and 18% of the first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindu

participants had favorable attitudes toward seeking counseling, as reflected by scores of

61 or higher. Several participants in both groups scored in the range of 53 to 60,

indicating neither a positive nor a negative outlook toward seeking counseling. Overall,

the first-generation group had a more favorable outlook regarding counseling than the

immigrated group, and the immigrated group had a significantly higher percentage of

scores indicating negative attitudes. Finally, the first-generation American-born Asian

Indian Hindu group had more participants with neither a positive nor a negative attitude

toward seeking counseling.


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Table 10

Attitudes Toward Seeking Psychological Help (ATSPPHS) Scores and Percent

Distribution

1st-generation
Immigrant group group
Range of scores n = 56 n = 52

0-43 6 (11%) 6 (12%)


44-52 31 (55%) 19 (36%)
53-60 8 (14%) 18 (34%)
61-69 4 (7%) 6 (12%)
70-87 7 (13%) 3 (6%)

In the next section I describe the procedure for analyzing the qualitative questions

and the results yielded by the two analyses that I conducted in order to understand the

perceptions of the participants toward counseling.

Results for Research Questions 3 and 4

For the qualitative portion of my study, I interviewed a religiously homogenous

sample of participants after they completed the three instruments. The sample that I

obtained included 20 first-generation American-born and 12 immigrated Asian Indian

Hindus. In the following section, I will provide demographic data for each group.

For the duration of the interviews, I was present with the participants inside a

private room. They completed the three instruments at a table inside an auditorium. Once

the instruments were completed, I inquired whether they would be willing to participate

in the interview portion of my research. Those who participated sat across from me while

I asked them the questions. Prior to asking any questions, I explained the purpose of my

research and allowed my participants to review the questions for any clarifications. I
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recorded these interviews using a digital recorder. The length of interviews ranged from 7

to 15 minutes. Upon completion of each interview, I thanked the interviewee for

participating.

First-Generation American-Born Asian Indian Hindu Group

Among the interviewed participants from the first-generation American-born

Asian Indian Hindu group, there were 8 males and 12 females. The ages of these

participants ranged from 20 to 47, with a mean age of 26.8 years. All participants

reported that they were actively practicing Hindus, and all had verifiable ancestry in

India. Most of the participants reported that they were born in the United States.

However, four people reported being born in India and migrating to the United States as

infants; they were included in the sample of first-generation American-born Asian Indian

Hindus because they had spent their developmental years in the United States.

. A proxemic position of three feet was maintained by participants from this group

throughout the interviews. Speech patterns remained consistent throughout the interviews

with little or no change in pitch, elevation, or volume. The male participants maintained

eye contact, and the pace of their speech was normal. Similarly, the female participants

appeared to be comfortable and had little difficulty answering the questions, but they

were more inclined to convey personal stories about their lives and how counseling or

other issues had impacted them than were the male participants. The pace of their speech

decreased as they spoke of difficulties with acculturating and experiences with

counseling, but increased when they spoke of family and friends and the pivotal roles

they played in their lives.


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Furthermore, the participants did not display excessive body movements. Several

of the participants, both male and female, would turn their heads slightly when they

wanted to think about a response before actually giving it. Also, the participants’

paralinguistic features remained consistent throughout the interview, and they did not

change their volume, pitch, voice quality. However, when serious topics were raised in

the interview, the volume of their voices tended to diminish for both male and female

participants. I found all members to be open and honest during the interviews.

Immigrated Asian Indian Hindu Group

Of the immigrated Asian Indian Hindu group, 12 participants agreed to be

interviewed: 4 male and 8 female. All participants had immigrated to the United States

from India, and 5 of the 12 participants reported that they had come within the last five

years. The remaining 7 participants reported having immigrated to the United States

between 10 and 31 years earlier.

While interviewing participants in this group, I noted observational data, such as

the kinesic, proxemic, chronemic, and paralinguistic demeanors of participants, and

recorded these data after completing the interview (Fontana & Frey, 2005). The proxemic

position of participants remained the same throughout the interview, as they sat three feet

across the table from the researcher. Speech patterns were inconsistent at times

throughout the interview, and the pacing of their speech tended to decrease at times. I

found that the males tended to give more direct responses, and I had to repeatedly engage

them to get more thorough answers. In contrast, the female participants revealed more

personal stories and did not require repeated requests for clarification. Frequently, the

immigrated group spoke of feeling displaced and, at times, missing living in India. It was
83

apparent that very few of the participants had gone to counseling, but those who had

received counseling spoke about it openly.

This group of participants did not display excessive body movements. However,

at times their facial gestures changed, and they would either close their eyes to think

about their responses or look away before answering. Several of the participants had a

difficult time maintaining eye contact with me. Also, the participants’ paralinguistic

features were inconsistent at times. Some participants, when they emphasized a point,

significantly increased the volume of their voice. The pitch and quality of voice tended to

be consistent throughout.

During the analysis of the transcribed data, I conducted two forms of analysis

(i.e., constant comparison analysis and classical content analysis) in order to answer

research questions 3 and 4. I chose to analyze three questions from the interview

protocol: question 4, concerning how their self-concept has been influenced by being an

American-born Asian Indian Hindu or an immigrated Hindu; question 5, concerning the

degree to which participants see themselves as part of the dominant culture or consider

themselves to be outsiders; and question 7, concerning how they view professional

counseling. I chose these questions because they directly addressed my research

constructs of attitude toward seeking professional counseling, self-concept, and

acculturation. The data that I analyzed yielded several themes that were applicable to

both groups. In the following sections, I discuss results based on each of the questions

that I analyzed. The participants’ identities are coded (i.e., FGGF = first-generation

female, FGGM = first-generation male, IGM = immigrated group male, and IGF =

immigrated group female), and numbers have been assigned to each participant.
84

Interview Protocol Question 4: How has your self-concept (“who am I”) been

influenced by being an American-born Asian Indian Hindu or an immigrated

Hindu? The results from the constant comparison analysis for the question regarding

self-concept and the influence of Hinduism yielded a total of five themes: (a) eclectic,

picking and choosing what applies from the Hindu religion or believing that all gods are

equal; (b) negative, implying a negative impact on self-concept as a result of being a

Hindu; (c) non-influential, meaning no significant impact; (d) positive, indicating an

enhancement in the quality of life as a result of being a Hindu; and (e) regaining

importance, meaning establishing a reconnection with the Hindu faith.

Members of both groups made statements about being eclectic, i.e., picking and

choosing their gods. For example, Participant FGGM1 stated, “I am religious in the sense

where I do believe in God and there’s a lot that I follow.” Likewise, Participant FGGF6

stated, “We’re all the same in that we’re all human, but we’re all different in the sense

that we are different colors, different backgrounds, different childhoods.” Similarly,

Participant IGF3 said, “They’re good. There’s one God and I believe in all religions.”

Members of both groups overwhelmingly stated that Hinduism was a positive

force in their lives. For example, Participant IGF4 stated, “I’ve never felt that I’ve lost

touch with my country and I still believe in my religion,” and Participant IGF6 stated, “I

would say that I have more faith in God, you know?” In addition, Participant FGGF11

stated, “I’m pretty self-controlled in everything I do and I have a feeling it’s a lot to do

with living –being a Hindu.”


85

A classic content analysis (summarized in Table 11) found that 85% (17

participants) of interviewees from the first-generation group and 92% (11 participants) of

those in the immigrated group indicated the positive influence of Hinduism in their lives.

Further, while only 8% (1 participant) of the immigrated group participants reported

holding an eclectic view, 30% (6 participants) of the first-generation participants had an

eclectic view. These results are suggestive of subtle differences amidst strong similarities.

Thirty-three percent (4 participants) of the immigrated group members made statements

that would indicate that Hinduism was relatively non-influential in their lives, whereas

only 15% (3 participants) of the first-generation group members made any such

statement.
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Table 11

Results from Classic Content Analysis—Importance of Hinduism

Number of
times used Percent of
Theme FGG, n = 20; References sample
IG, n = 12 made population

Eclectic FGG 6 11 30%

Eclectic IG 1 2 8%

Negative FGG 1 2 5%

Negative IG 0 0 0%

Non influential FGG 3 7 15%

Non-influential IG 4 4 33%

Positive FGG 17 33 85%

Positive-IG 11 23 92%

Regaining importance FGG 1 1 5%

Regaining importance IG 3 3 8%

To conclude, the first-generation group was more likely to be eclectic in their

view of religion, picking and choosing what they found attractive in various religious

worldviews and not holding a negative view of other religions. Also, they viewed

Hinduism as being a positive influence in their lives and in how they define who they are.

Only one member of the first-generation group indicated a negative influence as a result

of being Hindu, although a larger number of participants indicated that Hinduism was

non-influential in their lives. Immigrated group members were less eclectic when

compared to FGG members, and IG members had an overwhelmingly positive view of


87

Hinduism; however, they also had a greater tendency to classify Hinduism as being non-

influential.

Interview Protocol Question 5: To what degree do you see yourself as part of

the dominant culture, or do you believe that you are an outsider? Discuss your

response. Again, constant comparison analysis and classic content analysis were

conducted to determine whether first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindus and

immigrated Hindus identified themselves as part of the dominant culture or more as

outsiders (i.e., minority, Indian). On this topic, four themes emerged from the data: (a)

adapting process (i.e., statements made by group members indicating a transitional

process); (b) dual membership (i.e., participants indicating that they belonged to both

cultures); (c) member of dominant group (i.e., statements indicating strong affiliation

with the American culture); and (d) non-member of dominant group (i.e., indicating that

they felt as though they were outsiders and not a part of the dominant culture).

As an example of the first theme, Participant FGGF3 stated, “I don’t believe I’m

an outsider, just because I have adapted to the culture of America.” Similarly, Participant

FGGF1 said, “I feel like I fit in pretty easily, pretty well.” From the immigrated group

participant, IGF8 stated “this is what you want to do, so you come here, so you have to

adapt,” and Participant IGM4 described her situation as “steadily acclimatizing myself

and acculturation will take time.”

Another theme present with both groups was a sense of affiliation with the

dominant group. For example, Participant FGGF9 found that “as I get older, I see myself

as part of the dominant culture,” and FGGM1 believed, “I’m part of the dominant culture

’cause I’m an American.” Participant IGF3 indicated, “I mean I feel very comfortable in
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this country, better than my country.” Participant IGM3 voiced a similar sentiment: “the

people I know, mostly they’re not Hindus, but they respect where I’m coming from.”

On the other hand, some participants voiced the experience of being a non-

member of the dominant group. For example, Participant IGF1 stated, “I feel that the

American dream is nothing but a fantasy, ’cause when you come here and start living the

real life then you go, ‘Oh my God, I think I was better off back home.’ ” Participant

IGM2 found that “certain aspects of my life, yeah, I could consider myself an outsider.”

Again, Participant IGF2 stated, “Not American, I don’t feel like I am an American.” In

the first-generation group, Participant FGGF10 suggested that other people’s reactions to

her reinforced her sense of being an outside, while Participant FGGF7 indicated, “I never

say I’m an American citizen. I always say I’m Indian.”

Finally, members from both groups made statements that represented the theme of

dual membership. For instance, Participant FGGF11 stated, “I don’t believe I’m an

outsider. I don’t think I’m a part of the dominant culture either,” and Participant FGGF6

shared an almost identical comment. In the immigrated group, Participant IGF3 stated,

“I’m proud to be American citizen, proud to be Indian citizen, and I will, you know,

move from Indian society to American,” and Participant IGM2 stated, “Certain aspects of

my life, I think, you know, I’m part of the dominant culture, for example my professional

life.”

Results revealed that, overwhelmingly, the immigrated group members were

adapting to the dominant culture. Further, they were more likely to feel a sense of dual

membership, especially if they had been in the U.S. for many years. Finally, even though

they had immigrated, they felt more like members of the dominant group. On the other
89

hand, the first-generation group members indicated that they felt they were adapting and

were part of the dominant culture; however, they also had more frequent thoughts about

not belonging to the dominant culture.

Classic content analysis yielded notable differences and similarities in the

responses offered by participants to interview question 5 (see Table 12). For example,

whereas 15% (3 participants) of the first-generation group made statements that were

indicative of the adapting process, 33% (4 participants) of respondents in the immigrated

group made such statements. Also, both groups equally (10 FGG participants and 6 IG

participants, or 50% of each group) made statements suggesting that they viewed

themselves as having a dual membership. A majority of participants in the first-

generation group also made statements indicating that they did not feel as though they

were part of the dominant culture (60% or 12 participants), as did members of the

immigrated group (58% or 7 participants). Further, 58% (7 participants) of the

immigrated group members also indicated that they felt they were part of the dominant

culture, whereas only 40% (8 participants) of respondents from the first-generation group

made comments suggesting that they identified with the dominant group.
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Table 12

Results from Classical Content Analysis of Acculturation

Percent of
Code Number of References sample
FGG, n = 20; IG, n = 12 times used made population

Adapting process FGG 3 3 15%

Adapting process IG 4 5 33%

Dual membership FGG 10 16 50%

Dual membership IG 6 10 50%

Member of dominant group FGG 8 13 40%

Member of dominant group IG 7 12 58%

Non-member of dominant group


FGG 12 26 60%

Non-member of dominant group IG 7 21 58%

Interview Protocol Question 7: How do you view professional counseling?

After completion of the constant comparison analysis, the themes that emerged from the

data were used to categorize the statements made by members of both groups. The

themes were as follows: (a) negative unnecessary (i.e., there was no need and participants

were apprehensive); (b) neutral-no experience (i.e., participants had no opinion on the

matter); (c) positive-prior experience (i.e., participants were more likely to have a

positive view because of their personal experience with counseling); (d) positive view

from family members’ or friends’ personal experiences (i.e., the participants knew of

friends or family who had benefited but they had not gone to counseling themselves); (e)

positive view-no personal experience (i.e., participants had a positive view without any

type of experience with counseling and without knowing someone who had gone to
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counseling); (f) resolve with family and friends (i.e., participants were more inclined to

resolve their personal issues by talking to friends and family); (g) stigma (i.e.,

participants felt there was a stigma associated with going to counseling); and (h) last

resort (i.e., counseling would be an option if all other avenues failed). The classic content

analysis, conducted after the constant comparison analysis, revealed some prevalent

attitudes in participants’ views of counseling. For example, several members of both

groups perceived a stigma associated with being in counseling. Participant FGGF1 stated,

“My aunts and my mom didn’t want my aunts or anyone to know, because they would

gossip and say, ‘Oh, look, something’s wrong.’ ” Similarly, Participant IGM4 stated, “It’s

still going to a psychologist, big taboo like in India and you don’t—yeah.”

Many members of both groups expressed a positive view as a result of a prior

experience. Participant IGM3 stated that counseling “changed my life because I really

feel there are certain things, you know, uh, in your life where your family, your God,

cannot help you.” Similar sentiments were conveyed by the first-generation participants

as well. For example, Participant FGGF1 stated, “I personally knew that I kinda needed

to get help, so, like, I made an appointment with my doctor and, like, I mean, I’m pretty

open about it now,” as did Participant FGGF3: “Uh, but then I went through a life crisis

of my own, in which I did resort to counseling, and I felt like the people around me, even

my friends or my family couldn’t truly understand what it was that I was feeling.”

Finally, many participants indicated that they considered counseling acceptable,

but only as a last resort. FGGM1 stated, “To me, it’s a last resort, like I said before, and

as that being a last resort, I probably would let them (family) know if I do go see a

counselor.” Participant FGGF3 also indicated, “I can’t solve it that, that way, if I just,
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there’s not, like, if I’m not just with what I’ve seen or heard, then I would go to a

counselor, but that wouldn’t be my first resort.” Similarly, the immigrated group also

indicated that counseling was a last resort. For example, Participant IGF4 stated, “Um,

professional counseling is the last resort. Especially that’s how I feel,” and Participant

IGM1 stated, “I mean definitely if I have to I will go to an Indian counselor with the

same values.” By conducting a classic content analysis, I was able to determine how

often each theme was mentioned. Based on that information, I made inferences about the

groups. For example, the theme of stigma was common in the responses from members

of both groups. The classic content analysis revealed that 65% (13 participants) of the

first-generation group and 50% (6 participants) of the immigrated group made statements

that connected a stigma with seeking counseling. Further, 50% (6 participants) of the

members of the immigrated group and 35% (7 participants) of the first-generation group

viewed counseling as a last resort. Also, whereas just 5% (1 participant) of the first-

generation group viewed counseling as negative and unnecessary, 25% (3 participants) of

the immigrated group viewed it in this way. Finally, 50% (6 participants) of the

immigrated group members made statements that they would resolve issues with their

family and friends; in the first-generation group, only 15% (3 participants) of the

participants made such statements.

The immigrated group participants, in general, were more likely to indicate that

counseling was unnecessary and that issues should be resolved within the family, that a

stigma is associated with going to counseling, and that, if they had to go, it would be as a

last resort. The first-generation group had a much more positive view of counseling, but

still frequently expressed a sense that a stigma was attached to seeking counseling or that
93

they would pursue it only as a last resort. Members of the first-generation group were

more likely to have had prior experiences with counseling and less likely to resolve

personal issues with family and friends. A detailed analysis is provided in Table 13.
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Table 13

Results from Classic Content Analysis View of Counseling

Number of
participants Percent of
Theme FGG, n = 20; References sample
IG, n = 12 made population

Last resort-FGGG 7 9 35%

Last resort-IG 6 10 50%

Negative unnecessary-FGG 1 2 5%

Negative unnecessary-IG 3 9 25%

Neutral–no experience-FGG 2 2 10%

Neutral–no experience-IG 0 0 0%

Positive prior experience-FGG 10 24 50%

Positive prior experience-IG 3 8 25%

Positive view family or friends’


personal experience-FGG 4 4 20%

Positive view family or friends’


personal experience-IG 2 3 17%

Positive view–no personal


experience-FGG 9 21 45%

Positive view–no personal


experience-IG 6 13 50%

Resolve with Family and Friends-


FGG 3 5 15%

Resolve with family and friends-IG 6 9 50%

Stigma-FGG 13 27 65%

Stigma-IG 6 10 50%
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Summary

In this chapter I presented the results of both the quantitative and the qualitative

analyses. The data from the quantitative analyses indicated that there were no statistically

significant mean differences between the two groups concerning self-concept and

attitudes toward seeking professional counseling, based on the results of the TSCS-2

(Fitts & Warren, 1996) and the ATSPPHS (Fischer and Turner, 1970). However, I did

find a statistically significant difference between these two groups concerning their levels

of acculturation as measured by the SL-ASIA; specifically, immigrated Asian Indian

Hindus had lower levels of acculturation when compared to first-generation American-

born Asian Indian Hindus. Moreover, there was no correlation between the length of time

spent in the United States and the three constructs (i.e., acculturation, self-concept, and

attitudes toward counseling).

The qualitative data revealed certain differences between these two groups on the

three main questions that I analyzed. There were minor differences in the groups’ views

toward seeking professional counseling, the role of Hinduism in defining who they are,

and the extent to which they felt acculturated to the dominant culture around them. There

were also many similarities between the two groups’ comments; for example, both

groups tended to view counseling positively but believed there was a stigma associated

with going to counseling, and both groups saw counseling as a last resort. Further, both

groups identified strongly with Hinduism and stated that it has had a positive impact on

their lives in defining who they are. Finally, with regards to acculturation, several of the

sentiments expressed were similar, as the two groups expressed feelings of being part of
96

the dominant culture, retaining dual cultural membership and trying to adapt to the

dominant culture with approximately equal frequency.

In Chapter V, I discuss the implications of my results and how they pertain to my

research questions. Further, I will include suggestions for future research and

implications for the counseling profession.


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CHAPTER V

DISCUSSION OF RESULTS

Chapter V begins with an overview of the purpose of the study and the structural

design that I used. Next, I discuss the quantitative and qualitative data in depth, followed

by a discussion of the combined results. Finally, I present recommendations for the

counseling practice and future research.

Overview of the Purpose and Structure

In my study, I examined the differences between first-generation American-born

Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation,

self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling. The purpose of my study was to enhance

understanding of the experience of Asian Indian Hindus in the United States and to

contribute to the literature available for mental health practitioners who work with this

population.

To accomplish the study’s purpose, I administered quantitative instruments to the

study sample and then conducted interviews with a portion of the sample population. The

interviews further explored results of the quantitative portion of the study and obtained

added insight into participants’ views with regard to professional counseling, their self-

concept, and their acculturation.

For my study, I applied a sequential mixed-methods design using nested samples

(Collins et al., 2006). The sequential mixed-methods design is defined as the combination

of both quantitative and qualitative methods and techniques in a single research study.

This design allowed me to confirm study results and strengthen the study’s explanatory

power (Collins et al., 2006; Johnson & Onwuegbuzie, 2004; Onwuegbuzie & Leech,
98

2004; Walker, 2007). The mixed-methods design was used to address the following four

research questions:

1. What are the differences between first-generation American-born Asian

Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-

concept, and attitudes toward seeking counseling?

2. What is the relationship between length of time in the U.S. and level of

acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling for immigrated Asian Indian

Hindus?

3. What are the perceptions of first-generation American-born Asian Indian

Hindus about counseling?

4. What are the perceptions of immigrated Asian Indian Hindus about

counseling?

Discussion of Quantitative Results

Research Question 1

It was my intention to explore whether there was a significant difference between

these two groups on the three constructs that I was analyzing. To analyze the data for

question 1 I conducted a multiple analysis of variance (MANOVA). The results of the

acculturation scale (SL-ASIA) showed a statistically significant difference. Analysis of

the results from the other two instruments (TSCS-2 & ATSPPHS) did not yield any

significant mean differences between these two groups. These findings did not meet my

expectations, and I noted the lack of differentiation between the two groups in terms of

their attitudes toward seeking professional counseling and their level of self-concept. The

statistically significant finding for the acculturation construct was in the direction
99

expected, as first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindus had higher mean scores

indicating higher acculturation when compared to immigrated Asian Indian Hindus.

Regarding acculturation, 77% (43 participants) of the IG gave answers indicating

that they were bicultural and 23% (13 participants) had low acculturation, whereas 100%

(52 participants) of the FGG qualified as bicultural. I expected to find a difference in

acculturation, and several previous authors had found similar results (Abrahams, 2007;

Balasubramanyam, 2005; Reddy, 2002). However, it was surprising that 43 out of 56 IG

group members were bicultural. Similarly, I did not expect the entire FGG to be

bicultural; however, these findings are consistent with previous literature that examined

acculturation in Asian Indians (Farvar, Bhadha, & Narang, 2002; Ghuman, 2007).

Moreover, I speculated that, because the FGG members had been born and raised

in the U.S., they would be more likely to go to counseling and to have a positive view of

counseling. Again, with regard to seeking professional counseling, both groups were very

similar, and overall, the majority of the respondents from each group were not inclined to

seek psychological help. Specifically, 48% (25 participants) and 66% (37 participants) of

the FGG and IG, respectively, had negative views of counseling. Eighteen percent (9

participants) of the FGG and 20% (11 participants) of the IG had a positive view of

counseling, whereas 34% (18 participants) and 14% (8 participants), respectively, had a

mixed attitude toward receiving counseling. Previous studies conducted with different

immigrated groups as well as Asian Indian groups reported similar results when they

compared their immigrated sample to their American-born sample (Panova, 2007;

Pangamala & Plummer, 1998). However, even though the majority of both groups had

negative attitudes, some persons in each group had very positive attitudes.
100

Finally, I postulated that there would be a difference between these groups with

regard to self-concept. I expected that the IG group would have a higher self-concept

while the FGG would be impacted by trying to balance both cultures and, hence, would

have a lower self-concept. The research data indicated that 77% (40 participants) of the

FGG and 75% (42 participants) of the IG fell within the average range; only 9% (5

participants) of the FGG and 18% (10 participants) of the IG scored in the high to very

high range, and 14% (7 participants) of the FGG and 7% (4 participants) of the IG fell

within the low to very low range. Even though there was no statistically significant

difference, my assumption was mildly supported by the percentages. For example, 18%

(10 participants) of IG respondents had a high or very high self-concept as compared to

only 9% (5 participants) of the FGG respondents. Similarly, only 7% (4 participants) of

IG respondents had a low self-concept as compared to 14% (7 participants) of the FGG

respondents.

Research Question 2

I examined the same three constructs (acculturation, self-concept, and attitude

toward seeking counseling) for the immigrated Asian Indian group (IG), taking into

consideration the factor of length of time spent in the U.S. Previous research on

acculturation and self-concept had yielded results indicating that acculturation had no

impact on self-concept and ethnic identity, or on psychological adjustment and self-

concept (Balasubramanyam, 2005; Reddy, 2002). The results from my study yielded

similar findings. The variable of length of time spent in the U.S. had no relation to the

constructs of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking professional

counseling.
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Discussion of Qualitative Results

Using qualitative analyses procedures, I analyzed the responses of the participants

who agreed to be interviewed. I attempted to triangulate my data by conducting the

following procedures: (a) multiple forms of analysis, including a constant comparison

analysis and a classic content analysis; (b) member-checking procedure, allowing the

participants to review their transcripts and make any changes that they deemed necessary,

so as to ensure accuracy; (c) a debriefing interview, allowing myself to be interviewed to

uncover any possible bias or reactions that I may have had; and (d) the use of software

for analysis purposes. By triangulating my data collection and analysis, I was able to

achieve saturation of data, leave an audit trail so that others could replicate my steps, and

thereby increase rigor (Leech & Onwuegbuzie, 2007). The interview questions were

reviewed by a panel of counselor educators, and their suggestions were incorporated into

the final version.

I analyzed three research questions in order to obtain a deeper understanding of

the results from the quantitative portion of the study. Results related to each question are

discussed below.

Interview Protocol Question 4: How has your self-concept (“who am I”) been
influenced by being an American-born Asian Indian Hindu or Immigrated Hindu?

Shah (2009) found that, among Asian Indian clients (a non-religious sample),

attitudes toward seeking counseling were impacted by adherence to Asian values, and

Heine (2001) found that, when working with people of East Asian descent, the helper

must have an intimate knowledge of the culture of origin. Self-concept, it seems, has

been associated with ethnic identity for Asian Indians (Balasubramanyam, 2005; Phinney

& Alipuria, 1990). I wished to examine the importance of religion as the basis for ethnic
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identity for Asian Indians, based on the results of several previous researchers (Coogan,

2005; Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Firth, 2005; Hanna & Green, 2004; Holaday,

Leach, & Davidson, 1994; Juthani, 2001; Kamal & Loewenthal, 2002; Moodley, 1999).

For this reason, I used Hindu participants in my study.

I postulated that religious affiliation should be examined as a variable in my

study, so I used a homogeneous sample of Hindu participants to examine the importance

of Hinduism to their self-concept. I asked the participants in the study to define what role

Hinduism plays in their life and found that 92% (11 participants) of the IG members and

85% (17 participants) of the FGG group viewed their religion as having a positive

influence in their lives. Conversely, only 5% (1 participant) of FGG members and none

of the IG members believed that their religion had a negative influence on their lives. The

IG identified more strongly with their religious affiliation, but both groups gave similar

responses. However, a notable difference existed with regard to group members’ strict

adherence to the religion. Thirty percent (6 participants) of the FGG members, compared

to only 8% (1 participant) of the IG members, defined their practice of the faith as being

eclectic, including picking and choosing what applies to them, believing in a higher

power but being Hindu because that was all they knew, or believing that all religions are

good.

Overall, group members expressed the importance of their Hindu affiliation to

their self-concept, worldview, and day-to-day living. Balasubramanayam (2005) found

that ethnic identity was a strong predicting factor in self-concept; similarly, I found that

religious affiliation impacted the self-concept of the participants in my study. These

results suggest that, when working with Asian Indian Hindu clients, one must take into
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account the influence and value of the religion. Further, the transmission of religious

values from one generation to the next is indicated in the fact that FGG members

maintained a strong connection with their culture of origin.

Interview Protocol Question 5: To what degree do you see yourself as part of the
dominant culture, or do you believe that you are an outsider? Discuss your
response.

I postulated that there would be a difference in how group members viewed

themselves in respect to cultural affiliation. I then examined the extent to which the

participants felt as though they were a part of the dominant culture. An analysis of

participant responses revealed that 50% (10 participants) of the FGG members believed

that they had dual membership status (i.e., Asian Indian Hindu culture and American

culture) and that 15% (3 participants) saw themselves as in the adapting process. Forty

percent (8 participants) of the FGG members saw themselves as members of the

dominant group, but 60% (12 participants) saw themselves as non-members. Similarly,

50% (6 participants) of the IG members indicated that they had dual cultural membership,

and 33% (4 participants) believed that they were in the adapting process. Finally, 58% (7

participants) of the IG members saw themselves as part of the dominant group, but 58%

(7 participants) made statements indicating that they also viewed themselves as non-

members of the dominant group, reinforcing the ambiguous status of these newly

immigrated residents.

The analysis indicated that 50% of the IG members (6 participants) and FGG

members (10 participants) indicated dual cultural membership. I expected the IG

participants to have a sense of dual membership resulting from being immigrants;

however, I was surprised to find that the majority of the FGG members also believed that

they had a dual membership. These results differ from those of previous studies, which
104

suggested that American-born Asian Indians do not feel connected to the dominant

culture. Likewise, Ghuman (1997) found that Asian Indian adolescents were aware of the

differences between themselves and the dominant culture and had experienced racism.

Further, the extent of the racism experienced affected subjects’ willingness to adopt the

dominant culture’s values. Addressing the experience of racism was outside the scope of

my study, but could be considered an explanation as to why the FGG members believed

that they had dual membership status. Another explanation could be that FGG members

had held to their family values even while entering a new culture.

Moreover, I expected that IG members would see themselves as adapting to the

dominant culture more than the FGG members due to their effort to preserve their Indian

Hindu culture. Both FGG and IG Asian Indian Hindus maintained an inner-

connectedness with their religion in all aspects of their lives. Juthani (2001) recognized

that Hinduism is not just a religion but a way of life; Abrahams (2007) found that Asian

Indians view personality from their homeland’s distinctive value and cultural perspective.

The fact that Asian Indians have a different worldview was also highlighted by Rao

(2007) in his discussion of the difficulties encountered by foreign medical graduates

working in the psychiatric field as a result of the differences in worldviews. Results of

my study also suggest that membership in the dominant cultural group was strikingly

higher for the IG, again highlighting a willingness to adapt.

Interestingly, the FGG members did not perceive themselves as part of the

dominant culture and reported, at an even higher rate than the IG, that they saw

themselves as outsiders or non-members. Farvar, Bhadha, and Narang (2002) found that

Asian Indian adolescents who retained their heritage encountered alienation from the
105

dominant cultural group, and, if they identified with their religion strongly, they tended to

separate themselves from the dominant culture. Participants in my study recognized the

influence of Hinduism in their lives and overwhelmingly rated the influence as positive;

valuing this Eastern religious influence could increase these persons’ sense of

distinctness from the dominant culture. Similarly, Sundar (2008) found that Asian Indian

adolescents felt isolated from the mainstream culture and remained unsure about their

affiliation. The theme of not being a part of the dominant culture was voiced repeatedly

by the FGG in the present study.

In summation, the lived experiences of both groups were indicative of their

beliefs about cultural membership. Members of both groups indicated that they were

adapting to the dominant culture, believed that they shared membership with both

cultures, and made comments suggesting that, in various ways, they were both members

and non-members of the dominant culture.

Interview Protocol Question 7: How do you view professional counseling?

Results of my study suggested differences between the two groups in their views

of professional counseling; however, there were similarities in some group members’

negative perceptions of counseling. Shah (2009) found that when working with Asian

Indian clients (a non-religious sample), attitudes toward seeking counseling were

impacted by adherence to Asian values. He found that, as adherence increased, positive

attitudes toward seeking counseling decreased for both groups (American-born and

Indian immigrant).

I noted a difference in the findings between the participants in my study and those

in the studies conducted by Shah (2009) and Pangamala and Plummer (1998). For
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example, in my sample, the overall view of the majority of participants toward seeking

professional counseling was positive, whereas other researchers found a negative attitude

toward professional counseling, or only a slightly positive attitude (Pangamala &

Plummer, 1998; Shah, 2009).

Even though 50% (10 participants) of the FGG group viewed counseling as

positive based on prior experience, as compared to 25% (3 participants) of the IG, the

rate of responses concerning stigma was high for both groups—65% (13 participants)

among the FGG and 50% (6 participants) of the IG. Further, 50% (6 participants) of the

IG members viewed counseling as a last resort as compared to 35% (7 participants) of the

FGG members, indicating that FGG members would be somewhat more likely to seek

counseling services. Also, only 5% (1 participant) of the FGG members viewed

counseling as negative and unnecessary, but 25% (3 participants) of the IG members

viewed counseling in this way. Once again, these results indicate the relative

unwillingness of IG members to seek counseling. With regard to resolving personal

issues with family and friends rather than through counseling, 50% (6 participants) of the

IG members indicated that they were more likely to do so as compared to 15% (3

participants) of the FGG members. This finding supports the other results because IG

members were unwilling to seek out counseling whereas FGG members were more

willing. Finally, even though 45% (9 participants) of the FGG had no prior experience

with counseling, FGG members viewed it as something positive, as did 50% (6

participants) of the IG members.

FGG group members who admitted to seeking counseling found it to be positive

and preferred not to resolve personal issues simply with family and friends. Further,
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based on the results of the classic content analysis, the FGG members believed that there

was a stigma associated with counseling and viewed it as a last resort. On the other hand,

IG members had positive views of counseling also, but preferred to resolve issues with

family or friends. Also, half of the IG members indicated that seeking psychological help

was associated with a stigma and that it would be a last resort.

I found it interesting that members of both groups had had positive prior

experiences with counseling, yet a majority of group members from both groups believed

there was a stigma attached. These results were not expected. I anticipated that there

would be differences, such as the FGG members having a more positive view of

counseling, but, for this group, the belief of stigma and use of counseling as a last resort

were very high and similar to the IG members. Further, I expected to find that IG

members would prefer to resolve personal issues with family and FGG members would

not. I also found that negative attitudes resulted due to the stigma (i.e., weakness, shame,

inability to take control of one’s life) associated with counseling. Finally, even where

positive attitudes toward counseling are present, actually seeking outside help remains a

last resort. This result suggests that Asian Indians, when they eventually agree to seek

counseling, may already be in a state of desperation after exhausting all other possible

avenues to resolve the issue.

Discussion of Combined Results

In this section, I discuss the results of both the quantitative and qualitative

research. I conducted a MANOVA to examine the mean differences between the groups

on measures of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward seeking counseling, and I

conducted semi-structured interviews to understand participants’ perceptions of


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counseling, cultural group membership, and the influence of Hinduism on their self-

concept.

With regard to participants’ views of counseling, the ATSPPHS results indicated

an overall negative attitude toward seeking professional counseling for both groups.

Eighteen percent of the FGG members indicated having a positive attitude toward

counseling as compared to 28% of the IG members. Even though some participants had

positive attitudes toward counseling, most of the members of both groups had negative

attitudes. Similarly, previous researchers have reported similar results when comparing

Indian-born and American-born participants (Pangamala & Plummer, 1998; Shah, 2009).

In contrast, the results of the classic content analysis revealed that most IG

participants in my sample had a positive view of counseling, even with no personal

experience (50%), as compared to FGG members (45%). However, most participants

indicated their belief that a stigma is associated with receiving counseling (50% of the IG

and 65% of the FGG), and many IG members reported viewing counseling as a last resort

(50%), as did the FGG members (35%). When I compared both forms of data, I found

that the qualitative results did not support the results obtained from participants’

responses on the ATSPPHS instrument, which elicited fewer negative replies. However,

the high percentage of participants who had negative attitudes could be explained by the

stigma associated with seeking counseling, along with the tendency among members of

both groups to resolve their personal issues with family and friends (50% of the IG and

15% of the FGG). Further, half of FGG members reported having had a prior positive

experience with counseling; however, the strong stigma associated with counseling could
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lead them to make more negative comments about counseling in personal interviews.

I also examined the construct of self-concept and how participants’ experience of

the Hindu religion affected their self-concept. Each participant in the study completed the

TSCS-2, and again I interviewed participants from each group to understand the

relationship between religion and their self-concept. Overall, no differences between the

groups were indicated by the results of the TSCS-2. Even though the majority of both

group samples (75% of the IG and 77% of the FGG) fell within the average range (i.e., T

= 41 – 59) with regard to level of self-concept, 14% of the FGG members scored either

low or very low, as compared to only 7% of the IG members. Further, 18% of the IG

members fell within the range of high or very high for self-concept as compared to only

9% of the FGG members. These differences were not large enough to be statistically

significant in view of the modest sample size, but I believe that, if I had had a larger

sample, I would have found significant differences in self-concept.

I contended that religious affiliation should be taken into consideration when

working with clients of Asian Indian descent. Therefore, I examined the influence that

the Hindu religion had on the self-concept of the sample members who participated in the

interview portion of the study. Interview results showed that religious affiliation and

participation were considered a positive force in defining oneself (FGG = 85% and IG =

92%). Just one respondent reported negative repercussions due to affiliation with the

Hindu religion (FGG = 5% and IG = 0%). Thus, I found that self-concept and religious

affiliation were important in defining oneself, as emphasized by previous researchers

(Coogan, 2005; Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Firth, 2005; Hanna & Green, 2004;
110

Holaday, Leach, & Davidson, 1994; Juthani, 2001; Kamal & Loewenthal, 2002;

Moodley, 1999). Further, previous research has indicated that cultural values impact the

views of Asian Indians (Balasubramanyam, 2005; Heine, 2001; Phinney & Alipuria,

1990). Based on the responses offered by participants, it is clear that Asian Indians who

continue to practice Hinduism value their cultural and religious beliefs and rely on these

factors strongly when defining themselves.

Finally, I examined the construct of acculturation. Participants completed the SL-

ASIA, and the results indicated a significant difference between the groups. Most of the

IG members reported bicultural membership (77%) and a smaller percentage reflected

low acculturation (23%). In contrast, all FGG members had a bicultural membership. I

expected a higher prevalence of acculturation for the FGG. Unlike the acculturation

instrument results, the qualitative interviews revealed that participants in both groups

believed with approximately equal frequency that they were not members of the

dominant group (FGG= 60% and IG = 58%), that they had dual membership (FGG =

50% and IG = 50%), or that they were strictly members of the dominant group (FGG=

40% and IG = 58%). The results of the interviews support the findings both of the

quantitative SL-ASIA instrument and of previous researchers who examined the impact

of acculturation on Asian Indians born in the U.S. (Abrahams, 2007; Farvar, Bhadha, and

Narang, 2002; Ghuman, 1997; Sundar, 2008).

Members of both groups overwhelmingly reported being bicultural, and the

findings from the classic content analysis found that a high percentage of participants

believed that they had dual membership. Members of neither group tended to identify

fully with the dominant culture, hence the bicultural affiliation. Moreover, 23% of IG
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members reported low acculturation, and the interview analyses suggested that 33% were

in the adapting process and that 58% did not identify with the dominant culture. Again,

an examination of the results indicated that there was no difference between FGG and IG

members on the measure of acculturation; the qualitative interview findings thus

supported the results of the quantitative analyses. As stated earlier, non-membership in

the dominant culture is to be expected of this IG and FGG cause of the members’ values

and the importance they place on their religion.

Conclusions

In this study, I examined the differences between first-generation American-born

Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation,

self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling. The quantitative data reveals no significant

differences between the groups, except with regard to their extent of acculturation, as the

first-generation group was more fully acculturated.Interview data found that FGG

members were more likely to view themselves as non-members of the dominant group.

Further, dual membership status was found to be equally common in both groups, and,

finally, IG members were more likely to view themselves as members of the dominant

group when compared with their counterparts. Also, Hinduism was viewed by most of

the members of both groups as having a very positive impact on their self-concept and

how the participants defined themselves. Finally, the group members’ views of

counseling varied. FGG members were more likely to have counseling experience, were

less likely to resolve problems with family and friends, had higher rates indicating a

stigma associated with receiving counseling, and viewed counseling as an option more

than as a last resort when compared to the IG members.


112

The qualitative data suggested differences in views of counseling, and FGG

members had a more positive view. The two groups had some similarities and some

differences in terms of acculturation. Both groups equally indicated a status of dual

membership and of non-membership in the dominant culture. Differences included more

IG members perceiving themselves as in the adapting process and more IG members

identifying with the dominant culture. Finally, the impact of religion on self-concept was

explored. Most of the participants in both groups believe that religious affiliation is an

influential factor in defining who they are.

Implications for Counseling Practice

This research has several implications for the counseling profession. I will address

three relevant factors here: (a) the stigma and reluctance attached to seeking counseling,

(b) acculturation concerns and the influence of Hinduism in an Asian Indian person’s life,

and (c) prior experience with counseling as a positive indicator.

The perception of stigma associated with seeking counseling was a recurring

theme through the research interviews. Counseling is often viewed as a taboo and

accompanied with considerable shame. Members of both groups indicated that they

would prefer to solve their problems with their family or friends, or that they would be

concerned that others in their circle of family and friends would discover that they had

gone for counseling. Furthermore, members of both groups overtly emphasized that they

would pursue counseling only as a last resort, because seeking counseling, in their

cultural context, indicates a complete inability to deal with the problems in their lives.

Understanding this cultural dynamic is crucial for effective treatment planning, because it

suggests that Asian Indians who seek counseling are expressing a very high degree of
113

desperation and face further social stigma for their decision. The counseling practitioner

must be aware of the seriousness of these issues and stress that the purposes of

counseling include restoring hope and quality of life not just for the client, but for the

client’s family and friends.

Also, members of both groups indicated that they did not feel included in the

dominant culture, and FGG members reported especially high rates of alienation and

feelings of dual membership. These results indicate that first-generation American-born

Asian Indians recognize that they are not completely American or Indian. This generation

is trying to adjust or fit in to their new culture. Similarly, the IG members reported

adapting to the dominant culture and revealed several common struggles, such as racism,

feelings of alienation, and lack of social support. FGG members identify with their native

culture more strongly and define themselves with this cultural identity more than by their

lived experiences in the United States. These findings suggest that FGG Hindus adhere to

the traditional worldview of their family of origin, and that this worldview continues to

be transmitted across generations.

The common experience between these groups was the influence of religion.

Many members of both groups indicated the positive influence that Hinduism had on

their lives and their ongoing involvement with Hindu rituals, functions, and social

occasions. Knowledge of the basic tenets of the religion and the meaning given to it by

potential clients should be of value to practitioners as they seek to deliver effective

treatment. Several researchers have recognized the need to incorporate cultural and

religious understanding when working with Asian Indian clients (Coogan, 2005;

Deshpande, Reid, & Rao, 2005; Firth, 2005; Hanna & Green, 2004; Holaday, Leach, &
114

Davidson, 1994; Juthani, 2001; Kamal & Loewenthal, 2002; Moodley, 1999). Having

this knowledge base is vital in order to avoid disrespecting or overstepping boundaries

when one enters into a counseling relationship with a Hindu client.

Finally, despite the existence of stigma, many participants reported that they had

sought counseling or knew a friend or family member who had sought counseling. Fifty

percent of the FGG and 25% of the IG reported having used counseling services. These

results contradict the research that finds Asian Indians reluctant to use mental health

services (Mukkamala, 2009; Shah, 2009). This knowledge is helpful for counselors

because it reinforces the fact that Asian Indians may come to them for assistance—albeit

reluctantly in many cases—and that counselors should be equipped to deal sensitively

with this population.

Asay and Lambert (1999) suggested that client factors and relationship factors are

essential when a counselor is working with clients to induce change. Client factors

include strengths, interests, values, social supports, and other resources, while

relationship factors include respect, validation, and collaboration. Effective practitioners

might learn to recognize and encourage client factors and relationship factors. Orlinsky,

Ronnestad, and Willutzki (2004) reported that clients’ tendency to view their relationship

with their as between equals was influential in predicting outcomes. They also reported

that counseling was more successful when the counselor engaged and collaborated with

the client.

Recommendations for Future Research

Literature in the counseling profession as it relates to Asian Indian Hindus is

limited. Thus, my research examined the differences between first-generation American-


115

born Asian Indian Hindus and immigrated Asian Indian Hindus on measures of

acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling. In the following paragraphs,

I discuss the limitations of my study, followed by recommendations for future research.

The current research is generalizable only to the Asian Indian Hindu population

living in the Houston, Texas, and Chicago, Illinois areas, where I obtained my sample. I

assumed that all participants responded truthfully. Parts of my research relied heavily on

self-reporting. Participants might have presented themselves in a more favorable manner

once they were informed about the purpose of the current research; for example, some

may have exaggerated their commitment to their Hindu faith. However, I observed that

the participants responded openly and the consistency of participant responses indicated

that the findings were accurate and representative. Also, knowing that I was a member of

the same religious and cultural group, participants might have adjusted their responses so

as to present themselves in a favorable light. I did not take into consideration the age or

socioeconomic status of the participants.

Future research is needed to examine the impact of differences in age, gender,

socioeconomic status, and region of origin (within India). Further, future studies should

examine the differences within the immigrated group resulting from the impact of

globalization. The westernization of India, especially in its major cities, could be a

possible explanation of the lack of differences found within the immigrated group in

terms of length of time in the U.S. Further research on reasons for the stigmatization of

counseling within this population would be beneficial, as would an exploration of

methods to improve the reputation of counseling services so that they would not be

considered a last resort. Finally, future research is needed to explore the counselor
116

preferences of Asian Indian Hindu clients—for example, whether they prefer Indian or

non-Indian, immigrant or American-born, male or female, or older or younger

counselors.

Summary

India is an ethnically and religiously diverse subcontinent, and social identity in

India is largely influenced by affiliation with an organized religion (Ibrahim et al., 1997;

Juthani, 2001; Tilson & Venkateswaran, 2006). Hinduism is the largest Asian Indian

religious group in India, with 83% of the population identified as Hindu (Deshpande et

al., 2005). Hindus, most of them immigrants from India, now represent a significant

population in the U.S. (Das & Kemp, 1997; Hodge, 2004; Lugo et al., 2008; Smith,

2002). According to Juthani (2001), Hinduism is not just a religious affiliation for a

Hindu, but a way of life that creates a distinct and unique cultural group. As a unique

cultural group, Hindus have been described by some researchers (Coogan, 2005; Firth,

2005; “Hindu Arrival in America,” 2006; Moodley, 1999) as a self-contained or closed

group. Therefore Hindus may not be comfortable seeking help from a secular source

outside the Hindu religion (Hanna & Green, 2004; “Hindu Arrival in America,” 2006;

Hodge, 2004; “The Swamis,” 2003).

I sought to examine the differences between immigrated Asian Indian Hindus and

first-generation American-born Asian Indian Hindus on measures of acculturation, self-

concept, and attitudes toward counseling. Quantitative results indicated no significant

differences between group members for the constructs of attitudes toward seeking

counseling and self-concept. However, a difference was found in acculturation.

Qualitative data obtained from semi-structured interviews allowed me to explore the


117

differences and similarities between the two groups and to obtain clarification of the

responses for the three constructs.

As cultural and religious diversity increases in the U.S., mental health

practitioners must become trained to counsel these diverse groups of people. I believe

that treatment for Asian Indians must take into account religious affiliation in order to

adequately understand and address possible scenarios or mental health issues that might

arise. Mental health practitioners should expand their knowledge base by continually

challenging themselves to meet the demands of the changing population in the U.S.

Specifically, the population of Hindus is growing exponentially, and mental health

practitioners must be aware of the religious influence in these clients’ lives; their family

support; their social involvement; and the challenges they face, such as stigmas

associated with seeking counseling and feelings of hopelessness. This knowledge will

assist counselors in delivering effective treatment in accordance with their clients’

worldviews.
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134

APPENDIX A

Consent Form

Sam Houston State University

CONSENT TO PARTICIPATE IN RESEARCH

You are asked to participate in a research study conducted by Bipin Sharma from the
department of Educational Leadership and Counsellor Education at Sam Houston State
University. The information obtained will be used to write a dissertation and articles for
publication. I plan to use the information obtained by the interview for a paper which I plan
to submit for publication in a journal.

PURPOSE OF THE STUDY

The purpose of my study is to increase the literature that pertains to the Hindu population
and recognizes the Hindu population as a unique group amongst the Asian Indian
population in America. Specifically, my study will examine the differences in
acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes toward counseling between immigrated Asian
Indian Hindus and first generation American born Asian Indian Hindus.

PROCEDURES

If you volunteer to participate in this study you will complete a quantitative


component for the study which will require you to fill out the following instrument protocol
which may take 40-50 minutes:

The protocol will include a (a) demographic information questionnaire; (b) the
Suinn-Lew Asian Acculturation Scale (SL-ASIA; Suinn et. al, 1987); (c) the Tennessee Self-
Concept Scale-2 (Fitts & Warren, 1996); and (d) the Attitudes Toward Seeking Professional
Help Scale (Fischer & Turner, 1970).

Once you have completed the instrument protocol, I will ask for you to voluntarily
complete an interview that will be recorded and will take approximately 40 minutes. I
would ask that you respond openly and honestly when answering the following questions:

The following seven questions in the instrument will be used to obtain the
experience of the participants: (1) How do you identify yourself to people outside of your
community? Can you give me a few examples? (2) Whom do you turn to when you need
help in your personal life? (3) How do you take care of yourself when you encounter a
crisis? (4) How has your self-concept (who am I) been influenced by being an American
Born Asian Indian Hindu or an Immigrated Hindu? (5) To what degree do you see yourself
as part of the dominant culture, or do you believe that you are an outsider? Discuss your
response. (6) How do you identify yourself to people within your community? Can you
give me a few examples? (7) How do you view professional counseling?

POTENTIAL RISKS AND DISCOMFORTS

This is voluntary participation. You do not have to answer any questions that you feel are
too intrusive. Further, if you feel that discussing your past may cause you psychological
pain, again you do not have to reveal any information at all. There is the possible risk of
psychological discomfort because during the process of the interview we may discuss
your past or your experiences.
135

POTENTIAL BENEFITS TO PARTICIPANTS AND/OR TO SOCIETY

The benefit of this research is that the importance of recognizing Hindus due to the
increase in the population of Hindus living in the United States. This information may be
helpful in trying to understand the levels of acculturation, self-concept, and attitudes
toward seeking professional psychological help. Further, the information obtained from
this study will inform mental health practitioners that work with Asian Indian Hindus in a
counseling setting.

PAYMENT FOR PARTICIPATION

This is voluntary interview for research that may or may not be used, and there will no
payment for participation.

CONFIDENTIALITY

Every effort will be made to ensure confidentiality of any identifying information that is
obtained in connection with this study. During the interview phase names will not be used.
Participants will be given codes, and a description of the participants will be used only.
For the purposes of this interview, an audio recorder will be used to gather data.

AUDIO RECORDING

For the purposes of the interview, an audio recorder will be used to gather data and data
will be destroyed upon completion.

PARTICIPATION AND WITHDRAWAL

You can choose whether to be in this study or not. If you volunteer to be in this study, you
may withdraw at any time without consequences of any kind. You may exercise the option
of removing your data from the study. You may also refuse to answer any questions you
don’t want to answer and still remain in the study. The investigator may withdraw you
from this research if circumstances arise that warrant doing so.

RIGHTS OF RESEARCH PARTICIPANTS

You may withdraw your consent at any time and discontinue participation without penalty.
You are not waiving any legal claims, rights or remedies because of your participation in
this research study. If you have questions regarding your rights as a research participant,
contact:

Bipin Sharma Dr. Mary Nichter


Telephone: 708-250-0520 Telephone: 936-294-4148
E-mail: bipin23@hotmail.com E-mail: edu_msn@shsu.edu
136

SIGNATURE OF RESEARCH PARTICIPANT/LEGAL REPRESENTATIVE

I have read the information provided for the study as described herein. My questions have
been answered to my satisfaction, and I agree to participate in this study. I have been
given a copy of this form.

________________________________________
Name of Participant (please print)

_________________________________________ ______________
Signature of Participant Date
137

APPENDIX B

IRB Approval Notice

Office of Research and Special Programs


Sam Houston State University
903 Bowers Blvd, PS Box 2448
Huntsville, TX 77341
Phone: 936.294.3621
Fax: 936.294.3622
Approval Notice
Initial Review

23-Dec-2009

Bipin Sharma
Box 2027
Huntsville, TX 77341

RE: Protocol # 2009-11-053


"THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN FIRST GENERATION AMERICAN
BORN ASIAN INDIAN HINDUS AND IMMIGRATED ASIAN INDIAN HINDUS
ON MEASURES OF ACCULTURATION, SELF-CONCEPT, AND ATTITUDES
TOWARD COUNSELING:
A MIXED METHODS STUDY"

Dear Bipin Sharma,

Your Initial Review submission was reviewed and approved under Expedited
procedures by PHSC-IRB on 23-Dec-2009.

Please note the following information about your approved research protocol:

Provisions:

Protocol Approval period: 23-Dec-2009 - 23-Dec-2010


Sponsor:
Drug(s):
Investigational Device:
Device Risk Determination: N
138

Exemption Categories:

Expedited Categories:

Please remember to use your protocol number (2009-11-053) on any documents or


correspondence with the IRB concerning your research protocol.

Please note that the IRB has the prerogative and authority to ask further questions, seek
additional information, require further modifications, or monitor the conduct of your
research and the consent process.

We wish you the best as you conduct your research. If you have any questions or need
further help, please contact the PHSC-IRB office at (936) 294-3621.
Sincerely,

Glen Kercher
IRB Chair
PHSC-IRB

Investigator Responsibilities
Protection of Human Research Subjects

The Institutional Review Board (IRB) recently reviewed and approved your research. The
IRB reviews research to ensure that the federal regulations for protecting human research
subjects outlined in the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) regulations
(45 CFR 46) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations (21 CFR Parts 50
& 56) as well as other requirements are met. The Federalwide Assurance (FWA) (FWA#
00000000) awarded by the Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) at DHHS, is
a written pledge to follow federal guidelines for protecting human research subjects in
accordance with the principles of the Belmont Report. All investigators must read both
the Belmont Report and institution's FWA to understand their responsibilities in
conducting human subject research.

Some of the responsibilities investigators have when conducting research involving


human subjects are listed below:
1. Conducting the Research. You are responsible for making sure that the research is
conducted according to the IRB approved research protocol. You are also
responsible for the actions of all your co-investigators and research staff involved
with this research.
2. Subject Enrollment. You may not recruit or enroll subjects prior to the IRB
approval date or after the expiration date of IRB approval. All recruitment
materials for any form of media must be approved by the IRB prior to their use. If
you need to recruit more subjects than was noted in your IRB approval letter, you
must submit an amendment requesting an increase in the number of subjects.
139

3. Informed Consent. You are responsible for obtaining and documenting effective
informed consent using only the IRB-approved consent documents, and for
ensuring that no human subjects are involved in research prior to obtaining their
informed consent. Please give all subjects copies of the signed informed consent
documents. Keep the originals in your secured research files for at least five (5)
years. When appropriate, you should place a copy of the informed consent
document in the subject's medical record.
4. Continuing Review. The IRB must review and approve all IRB-approved research
protocols at intervals appropriate to the degree of risk but not less than once per
year. There is no grace period. Prior to the date on which the IRB approval of
the research expires, the IRB office will send you a reminder to submit a
Continuing Review Application. Although the IRB office sends reminders, it is
ultimately your responsibility to submit the continuing review report in a
timely fashion to ensure a lapse in IRB approval does not occur. If IRB
approval of your research lapses, you must stop new subject enrollment, and
contact the IRB office immediately.
5. Amendments and Changes. If you wish to amend or change any aspect of your
research (such as research design, interventions or procedures, number of
subjects, subject population, informed consent document, instruments, surveys or
recruiting material), you must submit the amendment to the IRB for review using
the current Amendment Form. You may not initiate any amendments or changes
to your research without first obtaining written IRB review and approval. The
only exception is when it is necessary to eliminate apparent immediate hazards to
subjects and the IRB should be immediately informed of this necessity.
6. Adverse or Unanticipated Events. Any serious adverse events, subject complaints,
and all unanticipated problems that involve risks to subjects or others, as well as
any research related injuries, occurring at this institution or at other performance
sites must be reported to the IRB within five (5) days of discovery of the
incident. You must also report any instances of serious or continuing problems, or
non-compliance with the IRB's requirements for protecting human research
subjects. The only exception to this policy is that the death of a research subject
must be reported within 24-48 hours of discovery. All reportable events should
be submitted to the IRB using the Adverse Event/Unanticipated Problem Report
Form.
7. Research Record Keeping. You must keep the following research related records,
at a minimum, in a secure location for a minimum of five years: the IRB
approved research protocol and all amendments; all informed consent documents;
recruiting materials; continuing review reports; adverse or unanticipated events;
and all correspondence from the IRB.
8. Reports to FDA and Sponsor. When you submit the required annual report to the
FDA or you submit required reports to your sponsor, you must provide a copy of
that report to the IRB. You may submit the report at the time of continuing IRB
review.
9. Provision of Emergency Medical Care. When a physician provides emergency
medical care to a subject without prior IRB review and approval, to the extent
140

permitted by law, such activities will not be recognized as research nor the data
used in support of research.
10. Final reports. When you have completed (no further subject enrollment,
interactions, interventions or data analysis) or stopped work on your research, you
must submit a Final Report to the IRB.
11. On-Site Evaluations, FDA Inspections, or Audits. If you are notified that your
research will be reviewed or audited by the FDA, the sponsor, any other external
agency or any internal group, you must inform the IRB immediately of the
impending audit/evaluation.
141

APPENDIX C

Demographics Questionnaire

I.D. # ____________

Date: ____________

Please answer the following questions to the best of your ability.


If you have any questions, please direct them to your facilitator.

1. My current age is _________________

2. I am currently
a. Married
b. Widowed
c. Divorced
d. Separated
e. Never Married

3. I consider myself a member of the following racial/ethnic group:

a. Specify:__________________________

4. I have lived in the United States for (number of years):

a. (Specify):__________________________

5. Of all reincarnations of the Hindu Religion I mainly worship

a. (Specify):__________________________

6. I was born in

a. The United States


b. India

7. I immigrated to the United States when I was:

a. Specify (Age):__________________________
142

8. In regards to gender I classify myself as:

a. Specify:__________________________

9. My native language is:


a. Specify:__________________________

10. The highest level of education that I have completed is:


a. Grade school
b. High school
c. Some college
d. College degree
e. Post-graduate degree
f. Other (specify):__________________________
143

APPENDIX D

Suinn-Lew Asian Self-Identity Acculturation Scale


144
145
146
147
148

APPENDIX E

Semi-Structured Interview Protocol

Semi-Structured Interview

The following seven questions in the instrument will be used to obtain the

experience of the participants:

(1) How do you identify yourself to people outside of your community? Can you give

me a few examples?

(2) Whom do you turn to when you need help in your personal life?

(3) How do you take care of yourself when you encounter a crisis?

(4) How has your self-concept (who am I) been influenced by being an American Born

Asian Indian Hindu or an Immigrated Hindu?

(5) To what degree do you see yourself as part of the dominant culture, or do you believe

that you are an outsider? Discuss your response.

(6) How do you identify yourself to people within your community? Can you give me a

few examples?

(7) How do you view professional counseling?


149

APPENDIX F

Sample Transcription

Interviewer: Uh, thank you for participating in my research. I have seven


questions that I wanna ask you. This is question number one.
How do you identify yourself to people outside of your
community, and can you give me a few examples?

Participant IGF3: I identify myself as an Indian and I’m proud of that and, uh, in
American society I’m still friendly with them and I, you know, I’m
fine. I can adapt with anything. In the beginning when I came to
this country I was finding, you know, difficult, but later I adapted
very fast. One of my daughters is married to an American and I,
you know, have very good relations with him and his parents, so,
um, I can say I, you know, I have a good experience, good learning
experience.

Interviewer: Okay. Question number two is whom do you turn to when you
need help in your personal life?

Participant IGF3: Well, uh, now I turn to my friends, one of my friend, and then I
also confide help in one of my aunts who understands me and she’s
of my same age as me. Why I do that because, you know, she, um,
because I have family problems with my husband and she knows
my husband as well as me, and uh, she won’t tell my mom and my
sisters, so that’s why that, but only I used to do counseling at
University of Chicago for many years, but that didn’t work
because the counselor wanted my husband to come and he’s just
opposite me. He won’t like and he refused to go, so it didn’t work.

Interviewer: So for you it’s good to have, you know, you would go to
counseling, but you also have some good family members that you
can talk to?

Participant IGF3: Yes. Yes. Exactly.

Interviewer: And your friends, are they of Indian descent, Asian Indian also?

Participant IGF3: Yes. Mostly I have Indians and the people who understand me
more because it’s a cultural issue.

Interviewer: Okay.

Participant IGF3: So, you know, I have friends who are Indian, you know?
150

Interviewer: So it’s good that way. Okay. Uh, question number three probably
is similar to question two, but how do you take care of yourself
when you encounter a crisis?

Participant IGF3: Uh, I would say again I talk to my friend and my aunt, and if I
need to or when I’m alone I also depend on reading books, positive
thinking, and this is the way I’ve become better relationship with
my husband, thinking he has very good points also, and, uh, what
can I do, you know? So he will never change, so I’ve got to
change myself.

Interviewer: So reading is good, talking to your friends is helpful.

Participant IGF3: It’s good. Yeah.

Interviewer: And some type of influence.

Participant IGF3: Yeah. Yes.

Interviewer: Okay. Good.

Participant IGF3: Definitely.

Interviewer: Question number for is how has your self-concept, the idea of
“Who am I?” been influenced by being an immigrated Hindu?

Participant IGF3: Um, with that I’m just, um, normal. I didn’t have any no
problems. I am a Hindu. I tell everybody I’m an Indian, and I
don’t think I have any problem.

Interviewer: Do you think having that religious component in your life though
is – does it help you being immigrated, having that Hindu thinking
and Hindu beliefs, Hindu religious beliefs? Do you think it helps
you kind of deal with -?

Participant IGF3: I am actually to be honest with you, I’m not, um, ‘cause I’ve been
brought up in Kuwait and there was no temples. My mother didn’t
even go to a temple. I never was brought up going to temples
although I was a Hindu, and I’ve been brought up to be a nice
person, to be a good person, means, you know, do unto others as
you would like others to do to you. Be a nice person, and I believe
in one God and all religious are same.

Interviewer: They’re good.


151

Participant IGF3: They’re good. There’s one God and I believe in all religions.

Interviewer: Okay. Question number five is to what degree do you see yourself
as part of the dominant culture, or do you believe that you’re an
outsider?

Participant IGF3: No. I know I felt that I’ve been _____, you know, _____ make me
feel that I’m outsider. No. I mean I feel very comfortable in this
country, better than my country, and I’m proud to be American
citizen, proud to be Indian citizen, and I will, you know, move
from Indian society to American -

Interviewer: Easily?

Participant IGF3: Yeah. Easily. I worked in Chicago with American people. That
was fine. I have a social life with Indian people. That’s fine. So
yeah.

Interviewer: Okay. Question number six is how do you identify yourself to


people within your community?

Participant IGF3: As a Hindu, as an Indian.

Interviewer: Okay, and question number seven is how do you view professional
counseling?

Participant IGF3: Very nice. I would say I had, you know, I believe I go to a
psychiatrist now also ‘cause I have health problems like I get
seizes and anxiety attacks sometimes, so I believe in this, but, um,
unfortunately I couldn’t continue and another problem with me is
because I’m on medicines I’m not allowed to drive and that is a
hindrance in my life and I, you know, don’t even walk around
wherever _____ myself because if I fall I fall, you know,
sometimes, and end up in the emergency room. So my family is
also concerned. Whenever I go I call them and I _____ I call them,
things like that.

Interviewer: Sure, but overall you think counseling is helpful?

Participant IGF3: Yes. Yes I agree.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, do you have any other questions for me or do you want
to elaborate on any of your responses?
152

Participant IGF3: No. I think I elaborated enough and you’re very nice and _____
_____, you know, good to do, and if it helps, um, it’s good for, you
know, if it can help in any way.

Interviewer: All right. Thank you very much for your time.

[End of Audio]
153

Interviewer: I want to thank you for participating in my research. I want to ask


you the following seven questions. Question No. 1 is how do you
identify yourself to people outside of your community and can you
give me a few examples?

Participant FGGF10: Um, I generally keep race out of it unless it’s asked. Um, I’ll tell
them where I grew up or things like that or, um, I steer away from
race. I think it’s a sensitive topic, so.

Interviewer: Okay. If they do ask, what do you say?

Participant FGGF10: I say I’m Indian and, um, and then they usually say, “Oh, well, you
know, were you born here?” or something of that sort and I say,
“No, I was born there and I immigrated here when I was just a
kid.”

Interviewer: Okay. Um, who do you turn to when you need help in your
personal life?

Participant FGGF10: Um, family and friends.

Interviewer: Are most of your friends Asian-Indian, as well?

Participant FGGF10: No. I don’t have any Indian friends.

Interviewer: At all?

Participant FGGF10: No.

Interviewer: Okay. Would you turn to family first and then friends or would it
be friends and then family?

Participant FGGF10: Uh, that would depend on the problem.

Interviewer: Okay.

Participant FGGF10: Yeah. If, I don’t know, if it was something like school or work,
most problems I come to my family with, but if I was like – I guess
not even my own problem. If I was upset ‘cause, you know,
something happened to a friend and I thought that it’s something
that my family wouldn’t understand, I would go to another friend
for advice or just to vent.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, Question No. 3 is how do you take care of yourself
when you encounter a crisis?
154

Participant FGGF10: Um, I don’t know. I – I internalize a lot. I don’t really – I don’t
talk about things unless I have to. I’d say I’m the quietest out of
the bunch in this house.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, Question No. 4 is how has your self-concept been
influenced by being an American-born Asian-Indian Hindu or an
immigrated Hindu?

Participant FGGF10: Um, I don’t know. I think we were instilled with a lot of like
having pride in yourself or, you know, even if we were born here,
even if we were white, we would all still be different so you might
as well just embrace yourself the way you are, and, um, I don’t
know. We were always kind of, at least my parents were, kind of
always told me that if people really care about you, they care about
the person you are inside and that stuff doesn’t matter. So well, I
don’t know. I think that’s probably the biggest thing is that and
some of the values, family values we have.

Interviewer: Hm.

Participant FGGF10: That’s probably the biggest way I was influenced. I mean I’m 24
and I still live at home and I don’t see a problem with that.

Interviewer: Hm.

Participant FGGF10: So and I don’t – I’m not gonna move out until I’m married or, you
know, I get into school out of state. That’s the only time I’d
probably move out.

Interviewer: So being an Indian Hindu has obviously been a significant part –


part of defining yourself?

Participant FGGF10: Yeah. I think I always do quote-unquote “the Indian thing” –

Interviewer: Okay.

Participant FGGF10: – to do.

Interviewer: All right. Um, Question No. 5 is to what degree do you see
yourself as part of the dominant culture or do you believe that
you’re an outsider?

Participant FGGF10: Yeah. I’d say I’m, yeah, I’m an outsider, I’d say, in this country.

Interviewer: _____ you feel that.


155

Participant FGGF10: Yeah. I mean, well, you can tell by the way people – people’s
initial reactions with you. I work in an office where I’m the only
non-white person and I think almost – I don’t take offense to it, but
there’s lots of questions about like, “Oh, well, what do your people
do?”

Interviewer: Hm.

Participant FGGF10: Or, you know, you guys don’t eat meat so what do you guys eat?
Do you just eat vegetables all day? “Well, no (laughs). There’s
other foods you can eat.”

Interviewer: You did say earlier that, you know, you were talking about it’s
kind of sensitive when you identify yourself. Is – is that somehow
related to this feeling of being an outsider?

Participant FGGF10: Yeah. I think, I don’t know, I just – I feel like if I bring up race
first then it automatically sets up a wall.

Interviewer: Hm.

Participant FGGF10: That, you know, I’m – I feel like I always have to be, um, the more
understanding person. If I’m talking to someone that’s – that’s
mainly white, I have to be the more understanding or the more
embracing of other –

Interviewer: Of their –

Participant FGGF10: – of what they’ve been through. Um, and then I always I feel like I
kinda have to defend myself. So if I bring up race and I say, “Oh,
well, I’m – I’m Indian American.” then it’s like, oh, well, that’s –
I bring – I put race on the table and then it opens up the door for all
this other stuff, so.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, how do you identify yourself to people within your
community?

Participant FGGF10: Like the Indian community?

Interviewer: Um-hum.

Participant FGGF10: Um, I mean, well, I’m not really exposed to people outside my
family, um, I think, and that’s intentionally. I don’t hang out with
other Indians outside of the family, um, so I don’t really have the
opportunity to identify myself, you know.
156

Interviewer: Okay.

Participant FGGF10: ‘Cause my family knows who I am. I don’t –

Interviewer: Right.

Participant FGGF10: I wouldn’t have to justify anything to them.

Interviewer: Obviously. Um, Question No. 7 is how do you view professional


counseling?

Participant FGGF10: Um, I think that it’s something that some people need. It’s not for
everybody. I think it’s something that you have to have the will to
do. It – it’s not something someone can say, “Go to this and do it.”
Unless you really want the help, it’s not gonna work.

Interviewer: Would you ever consider – would counseling – I know you said
that you would talk to your family and friends based on the issue.

Participant FGGF10: Right.

Interviewer: Um, would counseling be sort of like a last resort if you ever
thought about attending _____?

Participant FGGF10: Yeah. I’d say it’d be a last resort if it was just something that I felt
– an issue I felt wasn’t being resolved by talking to the people that
were close to me or wasn’t getting – I don’t know. I wasn’t getting
that reassurance from – from the people that I’m closest to, then I
would go somewhere else to get it or if it – if I felt like I had some
serious –

Interviewer: Hm.

Participant FGGF10: – emotional or psychiatric issue.

Interviewer: Do you think there’s a stigma associated with that?

Participant FGGF10: Yeah.

Interviewer: Do you think it’s more predominant in the Indian culture?

Participant FGGF10: Yeah. I think family matters are kept within the family and if you
have a family, why go to someone else? I think that’s what we’re
taught.

Interviewer: Um-hum.
157

Participant FGGF10: It’s keep everything with the family. Don’t trust anybody else
‘cause they’re not family.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, uh, I guess at this time, would you want to elaborate
on any of the responses that you gave or do you have any questions
for me specifically?

Participant FGGF10: Um, yeah. Well, I, just the whole why – why I’m not part of other
Indian, outside of my family, other groups. I don’t think that it’s –
the what I’ve been exposed to from college, I didn’t grow up – I
grew up in – in mainly black neighborhood or Hispanic
neighborhood, but in college is when I was exposed to other
Indians and I viewed them as not Indian.

Interviewer: Hm.

Participant FGGF10: I – I mean it sounds kind of mean, but I thought, “I’m Indian.
You’re not.”

Interviewer: Um-hum.

Participant FGGF10: We don’t – Indians don’t do that, especially the girls. That’s how I
felt.

Interviewer: Okay.

Participant FGGF10: And so I kind of steered way away from it ‘cause I felt like I think
because of the way I was raised, I was smart enough to say if I
surround myself with that, there’s a chance that I might become
there.

Interviewer: Um-hum.

Participant FGGF10: So I intentionally didn’t.

Interviewer: Okay.

Participant FGGF10: So, okay, that’s it.

Interviewer: Okay. All right. Thank you. I appreciate it.

[End of Audio]
158

Interviewer: Uh, thank you for participating in my research. I’m gonna ask you
the following seven questions. Question one is how do you
identify yourself to people outside of your community, and can
you give me a few examples?

Participant IGM4: Sure. Hmm, usually I identify myself as an Indian to people


outside my community. Um, usually I go to interviews most of the
times, conferences with most of the people around me are
Americans, so I identify myself as Indian, so yeah.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, question number two is whom do you turn to when
you need help in your personal life?

Participant IGM4: Um, my family comes first and my family, my mom. Yeah.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, question three is how do you take care of yourself
when you encounter a crisis?

Participant IGM4: Again go back to family and friends, and usually my go-to man
will always be my mom first.

Interviewer: Okay. Uh, question number four is how has your self-concept
been influenced by being an immigrated Hindu?

Participant IGM4: Um, well I haven’t been here for much long, so the concept of
being an Indian is still there.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, question number five is to what degree do you see
yourself as part of the dominant culture, or do you believe that
you’re an outsider?

Participant IGM4: I still think I’m an outsider that hasn’t been – it’s been just six
months for me staying here so I still think I’m an outsider, but I’m
slowly and steadily acclimatizing myself and acculturation will
take time, but yeah.

Interviewer: Okay. Question number six is how do you identify yourself to


people within your own community, and can you give a few
examples?

Participant IGM4: You know when I’m with people of my community, in the sense
people from my own native place; I identify myself as a Punjabi.
With other Indians from different states of India I identify myself
as a North Indian.
159

Interviewer: Okay. Question number seven is how do you view professional


counseling?

Participant IGM4: I think it’s pretty good move. I think people who need it should
take it and it’s not something, which you should be ashamed of.
These people are here to help you out and they are trained to do
that, and I think you should – it should be a part of your thing in
the sense that you shouldn’t be afraid of going to professional
people for counseling because they really help you a lot. In my, in
my experience yes they have helped me a lot as well as my friends.
Yes.

Interviewer: So in India you had actually gone to a counselor or psychologist or


something along those lines?

Participant IGM4: We had a social counselor in our school. Yes we did.

Interviewer: You’re saying like high school, right?

Participant IGM4: In high school. Yes.

Interviewer: Okay. What was like, what were some of the reasons that people
went to the counselor?

Participant IGM4: Usually it would be relationships and hard to deal with this,
breakups and all. Very few had the juvenile delinquent thing.
They were – yeah, for that, that purpose.

Interviewer: Okay. Um, would you ever go to a counselor? Well I guess are
you, would you be more inclined to go to a counselor here on your
own in the United States or would you still say like in India you
would go to a counselor if you had a problem?

Participant IGM4: I think more so in America.

Interviewer: Okay. Why would we – the problem in India? What do you think
the __________ is?

Participant IGM4: It’s still going to a psychologist, big taboo like in India and you
don’t – yeah. You have most of your family too as a backup, so
usually you don’t, and you solve everything within the family with
your parents, so you don’t actually require a psychologist,
psychiatrist’s help there, but here I mean I think the _____
structure isn’t that well defined or well structured, so that is the
reason why people go to professional counseling.
160

Interviewer: Okay. Um, do you have anything else that you wanted to clarify
for anything that you’ve, any answers that you’ve given, or do you
have any questions for me?

Participant IGM4: No thanks.

Interviewer: Okay. Thank you for participating.

Participant IGM4: You’re welcome.

[End of Audio]
161

APPENDIX G

Debriefing Interview Protocol

Debriefing Interview

1. Which participant responses did you feel were the most helpful in terms of
richness in information?

2. In what ways did you think they were the most helpful?

3. How did these feelings that you have described influence your perception of the
interview process as a whole?

4. To what degree do you think the pacing of the conversation (e.g., length of time
between question asked and answered? impacted the dynamics of the
interview(s)?

5. To what degree were the findings similar or dissimilar to your thoughts prior to
conducting the interview(s)?

6. Which part of the interview(s), if any, impacted you?

7. In the future, how will you conduct interviews based on what you learned during
the interview(s)?

8. In what ways, if any, do you feel your


gender/race/culture/class/hierarchy/status/age influenced participant A's
responses/comments during the interview(s)?

9. What types of ethical issues did you encounter during the interview(s), if any?
162

APPENDIX H

Debriefing Interview Transcription

Interviewer: Do you wanna do a check or are you

Interviewee: No, it’s good.

Interviewer: Okay. All right, which participant responses did you feel were the
most helpful in terms of richness and information?

Interviewee: I think the most interesting responses I received were from the
immigrated group, and I think the reason that was, was because it
gave me a lot of insight into their mindset into what they were
thinking. Um, as far as the foreign group, I – I’m sorry. As far as
the first generation group, some of the responses were typical.
Some of them did surprise me to a certain extent. Um, you know,
but, but it was, I felt, I felt people answered honestly throughout
the interview process that I conducted.

Interviewer: In what ways did you think they were the most helpful?

Interviewee: Technically, they were just like, specific, specific, uh, statements
that were made that just kind of showed peoples’ thinking process
when it came down to how they balanced their religion versus the
culture that they were raised in, um, and, actually, their home
culture, so, you know, it, it’s back and forth a little bit. And that
was, that was very insightful for me to see – not only how people
have balanced it well, um, but how they also struggle with it.

Interviewer: How did these feelings that you have described influence your
perception of the interview process as a whole?

Interviewee: I think, you know, being a member of that, of that group, um, and
interviewing, like, people my age was one thing, but interviewing
people that were elder to me – because these questions that I asked
were somewhat personal, and, uh, that was kind of a challenge for
me, because I didn’t know what the older, the older people would
say or respond to or, you know, if they would be honest. But I
think that most of them were not very defensive. They, they were
very helpful, because they knew that I was doing my dissertation
work and so on and so they were, they were actually, you know,
welcoming, which was nice.
163

Interviewer: To, uh, to what degree do you think the pacing of the conversation,
uh, the length of time between questions asked and answered,
impacted the dynamics of the interviews?

Interviewee: Even though I asked seven open-ended questions, I found that the
response times varied. Um, some of them were, I think the earlier
on interviews were a little bit shorter than what I expected and that
was probably also for me to gain some practice, um, conducting
the interviews as well.

And later on, I was able to kind of use what my participants said
and, uh, and, you know, lengthen the interview. And it was, it was
fine, because, you know, I would ask follow up questions that
were, uh, based off of their information that they gave. So, you
know, it, do I think it impacted the dynamic? I don’t think it, it
was hurtful in any way. I think it was just what it is, you know, the
conversation was finished.

Interviewer: To what degree were the findings similar or dissimilar to your


thoughts prior to conducting the interviews?

Interviewee: Um, prior to conducting the interviews, I thought that the


American-born Hindus, that first, that group, would have been
more open-minded – not so much open-minded, but I thought they
would score definitely higher on, uh, issues related to their
attitudes towards seeking psychological help. And I was kind of
surprised to find that several people were very hesitant and a
common theme that emerged from that group was the fact that it
was going to counseling would be more of a last resort than
anything else.

And with the immigrant group, I was surprised to find that there
were several people that had been to counseling and that they also
had a, they had a positive view of it, but then again, it, it was, I
think it reaffirmed my belief that, you know, most immigrated
population people that come over from India, they’re not very, um,
keen for outside help, like they’d like to resolve things on their
own.

Interviewer: Mm-hmm.

Interviewee: But they, you know, both groups had overwhelming positive things
to say about counseling and mental health issues and things like
that.

Interviewer: Which part of the interviews, if any, impacted you?


164

Interviewee: Um, I don’t think I was impacted by what was said. Um, I think
for the most part, it was expected what they were gonna say and I
didn’t really, I tried to remain as neutral as possible, so that, you
know, I wasn’t impacted by some of the stories, because some
people did share their experiences and the problems that they’ve
had, um, and what they were going through, so I tried to just be a
very professional interviewer. So I don’t think I really let anything
impact me in that sense.

Interviewer: In the future, how will you conduct interviews based on what you
learned during the interviews?

Interviewee: I think I mentioned this a little bit before, but for the most part, it’s,
uh, it’s just being comfortable interviewing people. I think that
takes a little bit of practice and, like I said, the first few interviews,
I was a little nervous myself, but, you know, once I got more
relaxed and more comfortable, I was able to, um, really, you know,
be con-, be confident in myself and, and I wasn’t worried about the
questions that I was asking as much, you know, that it wasn’t
something that was so scripted it was just, you know, that I could, I
could free flow with the conversation and that, that was probably
the one thing that I learned and then continued to work on.

Interviewer: In what ways, if any, do you feel your gender, race, culture, class,
hierarchy, status, age influenced participants’ responses, comments
during the interviews?

Interviewee: With the immigrant group, I kind of felt that there was more of a
closed-off, or standoffish kind of response pattern at first. And I
think that a lot of that has to do with the fact that most of the
people I interviewed were a lot older than me. Some of them were
older than me. Some of them were in, you know, a few years in
my, senior to me, but I think the, I think my age, because the
culture, itself, promotes, like, a lot of respect for the elders and,
you know, you don’t, you’re not supposed to be asking these kind
of questions. So I mean, maybe to a certain extent that’s what was
impacting me.

As far as my gender, um, or my, I, I don’t think there was really a


gender issue there, because I equally interviewed males and
females and it was, it was fine. I mean, they, they answered
honestly. They answered as truthfully as they could and we, I
don’t think we felt that kind of, um, distancing based on that issue.
I’m part of that race. I’m also part of that culture. Class or
hierarchy in my status, I mean, I think the only status that impacted
165

was that I was a student and that they were willing to help me out
because of that. I think if maybe I was more, let’s say, just a
professional coming in to do interviews, that might have been
more of an issue, because they might have seen it as a difference,
but since they knew that I was a student completing my
dissertation, I think that overwhelming need to reach out and help.

So, you know, if it was one person doing an interview, when


someone else would say, “Oh, yeah, you know, this person will do
it, too, if you want.” And, you know, so it just kept kind of, uh,
helping, which was nice.

Interviewer: What types of ethical issues did you encounter during the
interviews, if any?

Interviewee: Several of the people knew, like, you know, I went to these organ-,
organizations to actually carry out the interviews and, and conduct
the survey research. Um, so people knew that I was there, and then
the people that sat down with me or, you know, we went off to
another room, I mean, I think, the only, the only unethical thing
that would probably arise is that other people knew that they were
being interviewed and other people knew who were participating,
because of just the facility that I was in. Like for example, if a
Husband participated in the interview ahh his wife knew that he
was in their doing the interview and maybe his kids and some
others. So I mean I could keep everything as confidential as I
would have liked to. Also, at times others that saw me sitting there
would come over and once they completed their portion of the
survey, they would bring someone else over. As much as I wanted
to ensure confidentiality, it was a little complicated because of the
facility I was in.

But, I mean, there’s not names revealed. There wasn’t anything


like that, so, I mean, I, other than that, I don’t really think there
was, um, any real ethical issues or concerns, because it was, you
know, voluntary research and people knew where it was happening
and they volunteered to come and meet with me or talk to me and
that was fine. Um, other ethical things, the only thing, I mean,
confidentiality, for the most part, is kept intact and that’s the most
important issue, I think, than anything else, so that was it.

Interviewer: All right.

Interviewee: Thank you.

Interviewer: You’re welcome. [End of Audio]

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