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Title:Satisfaction in interracial and intraracial relationships: a meta-analytic review
Author(s):Brooks, James Edward
Director of Research:Neville, Helen A.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Neville, Helen A.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Rounds, James; Ogolsky, Brian; Todd, Nathan
Department / Program:Educational Psychology
Discipline:Educational Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Abstract:The percentage of interracial relationships has increased. Such relationships however, have a higher dissolution rate than intraracial relationships. Although researchers have proposed and tested several hypotheses to explain why the difference exists, there are some areas that remain contested. One such area of investigation is the comparison of intraracial and interracial relationships on levels of satisfaction. Several studies have been conducted on this topic, but the conclusions only offer a vague and contradictory picture of this basic relationship phenomenon. The current study reviewed investigations of differences in satisfaction using a meta-analysis. Included in the investigation was an examination of several classes of potential moderators, including race of the participants, racial composition of the couple, and average length of the relationship reported. I also investigated the year of data collection and geographic location of study participants as well as the instrument used, how researchers conceptualized satisfaction (e.g., adjustment, marital distress), and the dimensionality of the measure used (i.e., is satisfaction investigated as unidimensional and global or is it multidimensional and investigated through features such as communication or conflict style). Using estimates of effect size d, no difference in relationship satisfaction was found between intraracial and interracial relationships. Analyses revealed that studies with national samples reported that those in intraracial relationships were more satisfied than interracial relationships, but that non-national studies conducted outside of the Western United States reported that partners in interracial relationships were more satisfied than those in intraracial relationships. Comparisons of satisfaction in intraracial and interracial relationships were consistent across race, racial composition of the couple, relationship length, the year of data collection, measures of satisfaction, and the conceptualization and dimensionality of satisfaction.
Issue Date:2015-05-14
Rights Information:Copyright 2015 James Edward Brooks
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-29
Date Deposited:August 201

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