Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


Racially mixed people-Psychology, Racially mixed people-Race identity, Identity (Psychology)-Social aspects., Biracial identity development, Biracial racial self identification, Attitudes toward being biracial


This research study examines how biracial young adults experience the process of racial identification and racial identity development. The purpose of this study was to contribute to the growing body of knowledge budding around this topic. This study utilized a mixed methods approach to explore the racial demographics and quality of relationships in bi racial young adults social networks across their life span; experiences with ascribed and self declared racial identifications, as well as, thoughts, feelings and attitudes about being biracial. The experiences of N= 53 biracial young adults, 18 to 35 years of age, were collected through an anonymous, online survey created by the research. The results of this study suggest that (1) Racial self identification in biracial people can vary across person, time and place (2) Social Factors and Racial Group Membership can be important to biracial peoples racial identity development and racial self identification (3) Inquiry into a biracial persons racial identification can evoke a variety of emotions (4) Biracial people's attitudes about being biracial can range from negative to positive. This study considers these findings and offers clinical practice as well as research implications for future best practices.




iv, 112, 2 p. Thesis (M.S.W.)--Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, Mass., 2009. Includes bibliographical references (p. 79-83)