Ethnic differences in processes contributing to the self-esteem of early adolescent girls

Cindy Carlson, Sarika Uppal, Ellie C. Prosser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

118 Scopus citations


Ethnic differences in the mean levels and sources of global self-esteem for Hispanic, African American, and White early adolescent girls were examined. Data were derived from a survey administered to students in attendance at three public middle schools. Path analytic techniques were used to assess processes that contribute to self-esteem. For all ethnic groups, higher self-esteem was predicted by authoritative parenting and perceived teacher support and related inversely to family stress. Ethnic identity was a significant predictor of global self-esteem among minority girls. Hispanic girls reported significantly lower self-esteem, which appeared to be related to lower overall scores on the predictor variables. Results are discussed in terms of the theoretical importance of ethnic identity and reflected appraisals from teachers as factors contributing to self-esteem among minority youth, along with the need for additional research on Hispanic girls.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44-67
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Early Adolescence
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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