Tridimensional Acculturation and Adaptation Among Jamaican Adolescent-Mother Dyads in the United States

Gail M. Ferguson, Marc H. Bornstein, Audrey M. Pottinger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A bidimensional acculturation framework cannot account for multiple destination cultures within contemporary settlement societies. A tridimensional model is proposed and tested among Jamaican adolescent-mother dyads in the United States compared to Jamaican Islander, European American, African American, and other Black and non-Black U.S. immigrant dyads (473 dyads, M adolescent age=14years). Jamaican immigrants evidence tridimensional acculturation, orienting toward Jamaican, African American, and European American cultures. Integration is favored (70%), particularly tricultural integration; moreover, Jamaican and other Black U.S. immigrants are more oriented toward African American than European American culture. Jamaican immigrant youth adapt at least as well as nonimmigrant peers in Jamaica and the United States. However, assimilated adolescents, particularly first generation immigrants, have worse sociocultural adaptation than integrated and separated adolescents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1486-1493
Number of pages8
JournalChild development
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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