Researcher ORCID Identifier


Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Dr. Wei-Chin Hwang

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The bulk of research examining barriers to mental health services (MHS) for Latinos focuses on financial obstacles such as socioeconomic status and insurance coverage. Unfortunately, less work has been done on cultural barriers such as stigma. The purpose of this proposed study is to develop and pilot-test a culturally adapted contact intervention for Latinos that reduces stigma and increases help-seeking intentions. This study will test the differential efficacy of utilizing psychoeducation with the newly developed interpersonal contact intervention (PIC) as opposed to psychoeducation (P) only. Participants (n=324) will fill out pre- (T1), post- (T2), and 1-week follow-up (T3) measurements on stigma and help-seeking intentions. Three individual 2-way ANCOVA analysis will be used to test the effects of intervention type (P vs. PIC) across time (T1, T2, T3) on the dependent variables of a) mental illness stigma, b) therapy stigma, and c) intentions to seek therapy while controlling for language and mental illness (MI) severity. Results will indicate that the PIC intervention will be significantly more effective in reducing both mental illness and therapy stigma as well as increasing likelihood of seeking MHS because such contact can convey normalcy of MI and its treatment. This research will highlight the importance of adapting stigma interventions for the Latino population in order to address cultural barriers to care. Future research should test the efficacy of the intervention in the community at-large with a diverse Latino population, and also examine whether the effects of the intervention will endure across a greater follow-up time period.