Title

An Examination of Affectivity, Depression, and Acculturative Stress in Asian International College Students using an Online Written Disclosure Protocol

Proposal Type

Presentation

Presenter Information

Tara OverzatFollow

Additional Presenter Information

Tara Overzat, MS, LPC, NCC

Assistant Director

Multicultural Student Affairs

University of North Georgia, Dahlonega Campus

Doctoral Candidate, Mercer University

Presentation Option

yes

Keywords

Asian, international, students, mental health

Subject Area

Clinical Mental Health Counseling

Description/Abstract

With the US college system welcoming an ever-increasing number of international students (Institute of International Education, 2016), the necessity of programs to help students acclimate to their new surroundings has become critical. China, India, and South Korea are three of the top four countries to send students to US colleges, with over a half million students hailing from these countries studying in the US (Institute of International Education, 2016). Many Asian international college students have a rich experience in the US and add tremendous value to the college communities that they join. That being said, struggles with acculturative stress, depressive symptoms, and negative affect are common among Asian international college students (Constantine, Okazaki, & Utsey, 2004; Dao, Lee, & Chang, 2007; Lee, Koeske, & Sales, 2004; Wang, Wei, & Chen, 2015; Wei et al., 2007; Ying & Han, 2006). Mental health services are used at comparatively lower rates among Asian international college students (Atkinson & Gim, 1989) creating the issue of how best to reach this population for relief from these symptoms. An online written emotional disclosure protocol may prove useful in this regard. Written emotional disclosure, initially developed by James Pennebaker, is a brief writing protocol that has improved symptoms of mood and physical health in multitudinous populations (Frattaroli, 2006). Research is proposed to examine the effects of an online written emotional disclosure protocol on Asian international college students in regard to alleviating symptoms of depression, acculturative stress, and negative affect.

Bio

Tara Overzat, MS, LPC, NCC joined the University of North Georgia as a mental health counselor in Student Counseling in November 2013 before moving into her current role as Assistant Director of Multicultural Student Affairs in January 2017. Born in New York and raised there and in Florida, she earned a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Florida (2004), a M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Mercer University (2011), and is now back at Mercer completing her Ph.D. in Counselor Education & Supervision (expected Spring 2018). Tara is passionate about social justice causes and their intersection with student success. She has presented on numerous topics at the local, state, national and international levels, with research interests in mental health, social justice, and student success. Tara has lived around the US and abroad, and now calls Georgia home.

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An Examination of Affectivity, Depression, and Acculturative Stress in Asian International College Students using an Online Written Disclosure Protocol

With the US college system welcoming an ever-increasing number of international students (Institute of International Education, 2016), the necessity of programs to help students acclimate to their new surroundings has become critical. China, India, and South Korea are three of the top four countries to send students to US colleges, with over a half million students hailing from these countries studying in the US (Institute of International Education, 2016). Many Asian international college students have a rich experience in the US and add tremendous value to the college communities that they join. That being said, struggles with acculturative stress, depressive symptoms, and negative affect are common among Asian international college students (Constantine, Okazaki, & Utsey, 2004; Dao, Lee, & Chang, 2007; Lee, Koeske, & Sales, 2004; Wang, Wei, & Chen, 2015; Wei et al., 2007; Ying & Han, 2006). Mental health services are used at comparatively lower rates among Asian international college students (Atkinson & Gim, 1989) creating the issue of how best to reach this population for relief from these symptoms. An online written emotional disclosure protocol may prove useful in this regard. Written emotional disclosure, initially developed by James Pennebaker, is a brief writing protocol that has improved symptoms of mood and physical health in multitudinous populations (Frattaroli, 2006). Research is proposed to examine the effects of an online written emotional disclosure protocol on Asian international college students in regard to alleviating symptoms of depression, acculturative stress, and negative affect.