TitleMeasuring immigration stress of first-generation female Korean immigrants in California: psychometric evaluation of Demand of Immigration Scale.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsDing, D, C Hofstetter, R, Norman, GJ, Irvin, VL, Chhay, D, Hovell, MF
JournalEthnicity & health
Date Published2011 Feb
KeywordsYoung Adult

OBJECTIVES: Immigration involves challenges and distress, which affect health and well-being of immigrants. Koreans are a recent, fast-growing, but understudied group of immigrants in the USA, and no study has established or evaluated any immigration stress measure among this population. This study explores psychometric properties of Korean-translated Demands of Immigration (DI) Scale among first-generation female Korean immigrants in California. Analyses included evaluation of factor structure, reliability, validity, and descriptive statistics of subscales. DESIGN: A surname-driven sampling strategy was applied to randomly select a representative sample of adult female Korean immigrants in California. Telephone interviews were conducted by trained bilingual interviewers. Study sample included 555 first-generation female Korean immigrants who were interviewed in Korean language. The 22-item DI Scale was used to assess immigration stress in the study sample. RESULTS: Exploratory factor analysis suggested six correlated factors in the DI Scale: language barriers; sense of loss; not feeling at home; perceived discrimination; novelty; and occupation. Confirmatory factor analysis validated the factor structure. Language barriers accounted for the most variance of the DI Scale (29.11%). The DI Scale demonstrated good internal consistency reliability and construct validity. CONCLUSION: Evidence has been offered that the Korean-translated DI Scale is a reliable and valid measurement tool to examine immigration stress among Korean immigrants. The Korean-translated DI Scale has replicated factor structure obtained in other ethnicities, but addition of cultural-specific items is suggested for Korean immigrants. High levels of language and occupation-related stress warrant attention from researchers, social workers, and policy-makers. Findings from this study will inform future interventions to alleviate stress due to demands of immigration.