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Inter- and intra-group differences in psychological concerns among international students

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With data gathered from 47 university counseling centers in the United States, this study addresses both inter- and intra-group differences in symptomatology at intake among international students. In Study 1, symptomatology among international students was explored in comparison to US ethnic groups. In Study 2, intra-group differences in symptomatology among international students were examined. In Study 1, data consisted of 14,421 international, White American, African American, Asian American, and Latina/Latino American counseling center clients who completed the CCAPS-62 at intake. Partially supporting our hypothesis, results indicate significant findings among international students in the social anxiety and academic distress domains of the CCAPS-62. Contrary to our expectations, Asian American students reported significantly greater concerns across many domains when compared to other groups. In Study 2, international students (n = 607) were further divided into five continents of origin: Asia, Africa, North America, South America, and Europe. Results indicate that in multiple domains, international students from Asia and Africa reported significantly greater concerns than those from Europe, North America, or South America. Implications of findings for university counseling centers and universities at large are discussed.
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Keywords: college counseling; international students; presenting concerns; psychological distress; symptomatology

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Counseling and Psychological Services, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA 2: Department of Psychology, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, USA 3: Department of Educational Studies, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, USA 4: Counseling and Psychological Services, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, USA

Publication date: April 3, 2018

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