Electronic Theses and Dissertations



Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Educational Psychology & Research

Committee Chair

Denise Winsor

Committee Member

Christian Mueller

Committee Member

Yeh Hsueh

Committee Member

Edith Gnanadass


Abstract This research addressed Indian immigrant parents’ challenges when they immigrated to a new and unknown sociocultural context different from where they were raised. They struggled to parent their growing children, who were exposed to another belief system when enrolled in the United States school system. They were challenged between preserving their home culture by teaching their children and adapting their mainstream host culture by learning from their children, which are quite the opposite in their cultural perspectives. Therefore, this research investigated the challenges of Indian immigrant parents who struggled to balance their home and host cultures. This research utilized qualitative methodology and hermeneutic phenomenological design to investigate and analyze the lived experiences of six Indian immigrant parents from a Mid-South urban area where the Indian immigrant population was increasing. This research utilized Bronfenbrenner's theoretical framework from Ecological Systems Theory (EST) as the cultural perspective was considered for the immigrant parents. Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) was utilized to capture the hidden emotions embedded in the cognition of immigrant parents, and the analysis was done in six steps. IPA helped to interpret the transcribed data through Heidegger’s hermeneutic circles, which allowed me to capture the meaning-making structures from the research participants' hidden emotions. Research findings revealed that due to the juxtaposition among immigrant parents in navigating two different sociocultural contexts, psychological disturbances were intensified when they immigrated to a new sociocultural context. Those disturbances of immigrant parents impacted their children who reside in close proximity to them. Research participants struggled with psychological disturbances when they tried to balance the two sociocultural contexts, India and the United States, for themselves and their children exposed to the host cultural belief system. Implications included educational, theoretical, and methodological implications on how immigrant parents and their children can be helped in an easy transition from one culture to the other. Recommendations included future practices for the Indian immigrant parents to navigate the unknown sociocultural contexts without much confusion and struggle. Future research can proceed with any other topics where immigrants struggle to navigate two different socio-cultural contexts.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to ProQuest


Open Access