Examining the Influences of Gender, Class, Race, Social Capital, and Linguistic Assimilation on the Subjective Health and Well-Being of Adolescents

Gunnar R. Almgren, University of Washington
Ratna M. Magarati, University of Washington
Elizabeth A. Mogford, University of Washington

The authors investigate the influences of gender, race, SES, adolescent development, parental support and social capital on adolescent self-assessed health, employing survey data from a sample comprised of the pooled 2000, 2002 and 2003 senior classes of 5 high schools in Washington State (N=3300). Because all of the high schools sampled draw from an urban area with a large concentration of immigrant and refugee families, the authors also examine the role of linguistic dissonance (Portes and Hao, 2002) on self-assessed health in a subsample of adolescents from immigrant families (N=750). In preliminary analysis of the 2000 and 2002 cohorts, a robust negative effect of gender on self-assessed health was unmodified by demographic, developmental, social capital, and parental support variables. In addition, there were negative effects of Cambodian and Vietnamese heritage and linguistic dissonance on self-assessed health that persisted despite controls for gender, SES, adolescent development, social capital and parental support.

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Presented in Session 106: Immigrant Children in the U.S.