Date of Award

Summer 2010

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)




Virginia Consortium Program in Clinical Psychology

Committee Director

Janis Sanchez

Committee Member

Desideria S. Hacker

Committee Member

Michelle L. Kelley

Committee Member

Kathrin Hartmann

Committee Member

Janice Zeman


Due to a paucity of research, little is understood about the experiences of Asian American emerging adults as they navigate their relationship with their parents. The purpose of the current study was to investigate intergenerational conflict in Asian American families, specifically when emerging adults are living at home with their parents. Acculturation gap, generational status, birth order, gender, and language proficiency were examined as predictors or mediators of conflict. Participants consisted of 350 Asian American emerging adults who were currently living with their parents, who lived with their parents during certain times of the year (e.g., vacations), or who had once lived with their parents as adults. Intergenerational conflict was measured using the Asian American Family Conflicts Scale (Lee, Choe, Kim, & Ngo, 2000) and the Intergenerational Conflict Inventory (Chung, 2001). Acculturation was assessed using the Asian American Multidimensional Acculturation Scale (Chung, Kim, & Abreu, 2004).

One-way between-subjects analysis of variance tests were performed to identify group differences in conflict across several demographic factors Correlational and hierarchical multiple regression analyses were performed to study the relationship between the predictors, proposed mediator, and intergenerational conflict. Exploratory statistical analyses were conducted to investigate factors that may predict level of conflict when emerging adults return home after living away for an extended period of time (i.e., boomerang children). A gap in acculturation to White mainstream culture between emerging adults and their parents was found to be the most powerful and consistent predictor of intergenerational conflict and to mediate fully the relationship between generational status and intergenerational conflict. Overall, the findings highlight the multi-faceted and variable nature of intergenerational conflict as it occurs in Asian American families between emerging adults and their parents.


A Dissertation Submitted to the Faculties of The College of William and Mary, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk State University, Old Dominion University in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology through the Virginia Consortium Program in Clinical Psychology.


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