Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects


Psychological Sciences

Document Type



Many factors influence cross-cultural differences in suicide rates and behaviors. One potential explanation is that attitudes and values influence the way individuals perceive suicide. In addition, previous literature indicates that attitudes can change in response to individual experiences. Further research on cultural attitudes toward suicide and individual experiences that influence them could inform prevention and treatment efforts targeted toward multicultural populations. The aim of this study is to examine the impact of culture, acculturation, and personal experience (i.e., exposure to suicidal behavior through close relationship) on suicide attitudes. The hypotheses were (1) that significant differences in attitudes towards suicide will be observed between US and international students and (2) acculturation and experience knowing someone who has died by or attempted suicide will impact suicide attitudes in international students. Regression analyses indicated that there were significant differences between US and International students’ suicide attitudes. Moderation analyses indicated that more acculturated international students had more tolerant attitudes than less acculturated students and international students who had personal experience demonstrated more agreement with fictional suicide attempts.

Advisor(s) or Committee Chair

Stephen O’Connor


Psychiatry and Psychology | Psychological Phenomena and Processes