The Long-Term Socialization Goals of Chinese and Korean Immigrant Mothers in the United States
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The socialization goals of immigrant parents in the United States for their children reflect the childrearing priorities of both their culture of origin and the mainstream culture. These goals, which guide parenting, likely have shared and unique characteristics with other immigrant groups from the same geographical region of origin. The current study aimed to explore and compare the socialization goals of Chinese and Korean immigrant mothers in the United States; the role of child gender in mothers’ socialization goals was also investigated.
Ninety-six Chinese (Mage = 37.60) and 97 Korean immigrant mothers (Mage = 35.87) with preschool-age children living in the United States were interviewed regarding their socialization goals. The qualitative interview transcripts were coded by trained research assistants.
The interviews revealed seven socialization goals (Self-maximization, Lovingness, Personal Integrity, Proper Demeanor, Religious Values, Self-control, and No High Expectations) across both groups. Findings demonstrated that Chinese and Korean immigrant mothers were similar on their endorsement of five socialization goals. However, group differences were found for goals of Religious Values and No High Expectations, which further differed across child gender.
These findings highlighted the common socialization priorities of Chinese and Korean immigrant mothers of young children in urban contexts, but also the need to examine sub-ethnic groups separately to understand their shared and unique parenting experiences. These findings have meaningful implications for clinicians and other professionals towards providing more effective services to Asian immigrant families in the U.S.
KeywordsSocialization goals Chinese immigrants Korean immigrants Ethnic differences Preschool
This study was funded by a grant from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (1R03HD052827-01) and Foundation for Child Development to Charissa S. L. Cheah.
J.J.S.: Participated in data collection, conducted data analysis, and wrote the paper. C.S.L.C.: designed and executed the study, mentored and collaborated in the process of data coding, data analysis, and writing of the study. C.Y.Y.L.: participated in data collection, lead the process of data coding, and collaborated in the writing and editing of the final manuscript.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The authors of this manuscript declare that they have no affiliations with or involvement in any organization or entity with any financial interest (such as membership, employment, consultancies, stock ownership, or other equity interest; and expert testimony or patent-licensing arrangements), or non-financial interest (such as personal or professional relationships, affiliations, knowledge or beliefs) in the subject matter or materials discussed in this manuscript.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional review board at University of Maryland Baltimore County (IRB number Y16CC20229) and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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