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The case of Turkish-German Berliners: Access to education increases acculturation and well-being in adult migrant women
20 September 2018 (online)
The objective of this correlational study was to examine women's well-being in the context of migration and acculturation- i.e., language proficiency, education, marriage patterns, outlook on life. Turkish-German women aged 19 – 81 (M = 46.7, SD = 11.4, N = 107) were randomly recruited from various Turkish women's associations. All women filled out a Turkish adaptation of the Bern Questionnaire on Well-being. 76.6% of the participants were born in Turkey and 23.4% in Germany. While 56.7% were first or second generation-immigrants, 30.9% migrated through marriage, 4.8% came for studying, and 7.6% had asylum status. The majority of the women were sill married (72.9% vs. 23.1%). Their method of contraception varied and included: no contraception (34.6%), contraceptive pill (31.8%), coil (20.6%), or a combination of condom, coitus interrupts, and other fertility awareness methods (13%). Results show that German language proficiency was associated with well-adaptation to Germany, r (107)=-0.258, p = 0.007, and years of education, r (107)=-0.277, p = 0.004. With more education, women seemed to worry less, r (107)=-0.276, p = 0.004. First generation immigrants were less likely to go beyond the Abitur (1%) than second generation (52%) or women married to second generation immigrants (50%). Overall, a positive outlook on life correlated with less medical complaints, r (107)= 0.276, p = 0.004, and higher levels of self-efficacy, r (107)= 0.419, p < 0.001. Turkish-born women were more likely to be in an arranged or forced-marriage (81.5%) than German-born (25%). Turkish-born women were also more likely to marry someone related or from same village (63.4%) than German-born women (16%). The data suggest that access to education increases acculturation and leads to overall well-being, fostering self-efficacy in migrant women.