Event Title

Quality and Stability of Adults' Cross- and Same-Ethnicity Friendships

Poster Number

021

Faculty Mentor

Merry Sleigh, Ph.D.

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Department of Psychology

Location

Rutledge

Start Date

20-4-2018 12:00 PM

End Date

20-4-2018 2:00 PM

Description

We compared young adults’ cross- and same-ethnicity relationships. Because similarity is an important factor in friendship maintenance, we hypothesized that adults’ same-ethnicity friendships would have higher stability than their cross-ethnicity friendships. Stability is an index of quality; therefore, we also hypothesized that the same-ethnicity friendships would be described as being of a higher quality. Participants were 65 young adults with a mean age of 19.33 (SD = 1.51). Participants randomly received one of two surveys. One version instructed participants to think of their closest, same-ethnicity friend while responding to the questions. The other instructed participants to think of their closest friend of another ethnicity. Then, participants responded to scales that assessed friendship quality, intimacy, and stability. Participants also responded to scales assessing barriers to cross-ethnic friendships and ethnic identity. We compared participants who were asked about same-ethnicity friendships to those who were asked about cross-ethnicity friendships and found support for one of our hypotheses. Young adults reported higher quality and more positive attributes associated with their same- versus cross-ethnicity friendships, but simultaneously reported similar levels of stability. These results differ from those found in children who reported lower stability and similar quality in their cross-ethnicity friendships. African American participants described the two relationships in unique ways, but concluded that the overall quality was the same. Caucasians described the relationship characteristics similarly, but concluded that the overall quality was better in same-ethnicity relationships. This mismatch is ironic because individuals of these two ethnicities are likely to be in cross-ethnicity friendships.

Previously Presented/Performed?

Southeastern Psychological Association (SEPA) Annual Meeting, Charleston, South Carolina, March 2018

Course Assignment

PSYC 302 – Sleigh

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Apr 20th, 12:00 PM Apr 20th, 2:00 PM

Quality and Stability of Adults' Cross- and Same-Ethnicity Friendships

Rutledge

We compared young adults’ cross- and same-ethnicity relationships. Because similarity is an important factor in friendship maintenance, we hypothesized that adults’ same-ethnicity friendships would have higher stability than their cross-ethnicity friendships. Stability is an index of quality; therefore, we also hypothesized that the same-ethnicity friendships would be described as being of a higher quality. Participants were 65 young adults with a mean age of 19.33 (SD = 1.51). Participants randomly received one of two surveys. One version instructed participants to think of their closest, same-ethnicity friend while responding to the questions. The other instructed participants to think of their closest friend of another ethnicity. Then, participants responded to scales that assessed friendship quality, intimacy, and stability. Participants also responded to scales assessing barriers to cross-ethnic friendships and ethnic identity. We compared participants who were asked about same-ethnicity friendships to those who were asked about cross-ethnicity friendships and found support for one of our hypotheses. Young adults reported higher quality and more positive attributes associated with their same- versus cross-ethnicity friendships, but simultaneously reported similar levels of stability. These results differ from those found in children who reported lower stability and similar quality in their cross-ethnicity friendships. African American participants described the two relationships in unique ways, but concluded that the overall quality was the same. Caucasians described the relationship characteristics similarly, but concluded that the overall quality was better in same-ethnicity relationships. This mismatch is ironic because individuals of these two ethnicities are likely to be in cross-ethnicity friendships.