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Presentation Time: 10:40-11:00
Home University: UNC-Chapel Hill
Research Mentor: Shauna Cooper, Psychology
Program: McNair
Research Title: Arab American Families, Acculturation, and Biculturalism: A Comprehensive Review

Arab Americans are defined as people living in the United States with ancestry from at least one of the 22 states of the Arab League (Member states of the Arab League). There are currently an estimated 3.7 million Arab Americans and the population is growing exponentially, yet there is little research that highlights the unique experiences of this demographic group. Given the consequences of the terrorist attacks on September 11th and the current political climate, where xenophobia and islamophobia are acutely present in U.S. society, Arab Americans have experienced increased discrimination and harassment. This present study is a synthesis of the existing literature on factors that shape family processes among Arab Americans Key focus areas of this review include: 1) historical context of Arab Americans in the U.S.; 2) acculturation and biculturalism; 3) culturally-specific family patterns and practices; 4) ethnic identity development; and 5) potential impacts on the development and adjustment of Arab American adolescents. At the conclusion of this critical review, I provide key recommendations and directions for future research on Arab American families and children.