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Publication Date


Document Type

Honors Project




Asian Americans-Psychology, Asian Americans-Race identity, Asians-Psychology, Asians-Race identity, Asian, Asian American college students-Attitudes, Students, Foreign-United States-Attitudes, Asian students-Attitudes, Authoritarianism (Personality trait), Marriage, Friendship, Vocational guidance, Ethnicity, Culture, Career, Major, Career choice, Asian American


Authoritarianism is a reactive personality assessment that seeks to understand the nature of individual's value tendencies. For many, this consists of a submission to legitimized authority and subsequently a degree of conventionalism, conformity, and a salient affinity for decreasing areas of ambiguity in one's life. This study explores the prevalence of authoritarianism among Asian domestic and international students in an analysis of their views and behaviors regarding marriage, preferential characteristics of friend groups, college major trends, motivations behind career choice, and the relationship with cultural orientation variance. Overall, authoritarian Asian ethnic individuals identified more with the vertical cultural orientation while accepting both individualistic and collectivistic values within vertical orientation. Those with greater authoritarian tendencies also showed a greater likelihood of valuing parental advisement while making critical life decisions such as marriage partner selection and career trajectory. Further, highly authoritarian individuals prioritized ethnic match and financial stability in their marriage partner selection and preferred to self-select out of friend groups with non-Asian ethnic peers. For both domestic and international students, choices concerning marriage and career were pragmatic decisions made with consideration for the impact it will have on one's social network.




59 pages. Honors project-Smith College, 2015. Includes bibliographical references (pages 45-50)