An Exploratory Study of Mothers' Perceptions of Acculturation Within the Preschool Context

by Sandraluz Lara-Cinisomo, Audrey Alforque Thomas

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This exploratory study examines the mother’s perceptions of her preschooler’s acculturation process, using qualitative methods to collect data from six Latino immigrant mothers about their own acculturation and that of their preschool child. Three patterns emerged: parallel dyadic acculturation, vertex dyadic acculturation, and intersegmented dyadic acculturation. One mother-child dyad were coded as parallel, defined by the complete disconnect between mother and child acculturation. Three mother-child dyads were code as vertex dyad, which is defined as the mother and child starting at the same stage of acculturation and then deviating from each other as the child’s acculturation accelerates and mother’s decelerates. Two dyads fell in the third dyad, intersegmented, where mother and child acculturation processes converge and separate at various points.

This paper series was made possible by the NIA funded RAND Center for the Study of Aging and the NICHD funded RAND Population Research Center.

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