Date of Award

Spring 5-2021

Document Type

Dissertation

First Advisor

Randy Busse

Second Advisor

Dawn Hunter

Third Advisor

Penny S. Bryan

Abstract

Resilience is a concept that has captured more scholarly attention under the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which challenges the resilience of individuals and countries against unforeseen global catastrophes. More literature documented resilience to various negative situations such as COVID-19 pandemic, earthquakes, maltreatment, and severe illness. Less attention was accorded to resilience to everyday stressors. However, normative daily stresses should be managed timely and properly so that resilience is in place when needed.

Within the framework of attachment theory and resilience theory, this study aimed to investigate the impact of adolescents’ perceptions of attachments to parents and peers on their resilience to everyday stressful experiences. Through a cross-sectional quantitative approach, the present study examined a Chinese adolescent sample (N = 2,378; ages 10-19) from elementary, junior high, and high school students in Chinese urban and rural areas. The correlation analysis revealed significant associations between parent attachment and resilience and between peer attachment and resilience. The hierarchical linear regression analysis showed maternal, paternal, and peer attachment were robust predictors of adolescent resilience, with peer attachment presenting the highest predictive strength among the three. The results of independent sample t-tests and MANOVA analyses revealed different levels of gender and age differences between adolescents’ attachment and resilience.

Despite some limitations, this study contributes to literature by providing a large sample size (N = 2,378), integrating attachment and resilience theory, and empirically evidencing resilience as an ordinary construct reflected in everyday experiences. Moreover, empirical data were not only reported on the results of three subscales of mother, father and peer, but also provided on three specific dimensions (trust, communication and alienation). The results from this sample have implications for parents and adolescents, schools and teachers, and policy, practice, and research.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Available for download on Monday, April 10, 2023

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