Effects of cultural orientation on the perception of conflict between relationship and education goals for Mexican American college students

Yolanda Flores Niemann, Andrea J Romero, Consuelo Arbona

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33 Scopus citations


Cultural factors internal to the ethnic group may exacerbate external and economic barriers to the pursuit of higher education for Mexican American students. In particular, cultural variables related to traditional, relationship-oriented behaviors and expectations may be perceived to conflict with educational pursuits. The present study examined the relationship between components of cultural orientation and attitudes and values that may create tension between relationship and educational goals for Mexican American men and women. Results of a survey that assessed cultural orientation and marriage and gender role attitudes of Mexican Americans (female, N = 356; male, N = 200) indicated that the ethnic-loyalty component of cultural orientation most consistently predicted adherence to beliefs that may lead to the perception of conflict between relationship and educational goals. Discussion centers on the role of ethnic loyalty as a risk factor for Mexican American men's and women's decisions to pursue and complete higher education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)46-63
Number of pages18
JournalHispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2000
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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