TitleAn exploratory study of the challenges of living in American as a Muslim adolescent attending public school
NameSheikh, Maliha F. (author), Elias, Maurice (chair), Haboush, Karen (co-chair), Rutgers University, Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology,
Muslim youth--United States--Social conditions,
Muslim students--United States--Social conditions,
High school students--Religious life--United States
DescriptionA qualitative, exploratory study was conducted to investigate the challenges faced by Muslim adolescents who attend public school in America. Participants included four female and six male Muslim adolescents between the ages of 14 and 17, of varying ethnic backgrounds, who currently attend public high schools throughout central New Jersey. Participants were primarily recruited through the Muslim Center of Middlesex County Mosque in Piscataway, NJ. Focus group interviews were conducted separately, among the males and females, where the role of family, peers, and the practice of Islam in the public school setting was explored. Additionally, the study sought to examine the coping strategies and resources utilized by these Muslim teens. An interview with the imam from a local New Jersey mosque was completed to gain further insight on the obstacles faced by Muslim adolescents in America. Analysis of the focus group interviews was completed using the grounded theory approach (Strauss & Corbin, 1997). Although results indicate some similarities to obstacles faced by typical adolescents, such as peer pressure and parental expectations to perform well academically, Muslim teens must contend with a host of other challenges largely due to the ethno-religious backgrounds of these individuals. The role of identity, peers, family, community, and school in relation to the challenges faced by participants are highlighted. More specifically, adherence to Islamic beliefs, experiences in dealing with peers, parental expectations, and the practice of Islam in a post 9/11 era, are revealed. Consistent with other work in this area, participants indicated that access to peers, especially Muslim peers within the community setting, are essential in providing a strong support network for coping with the aforementioned challenges. Other specific themes and commonalities are presented. Implications of these findings are discussed and recommendations are made for parents, school, community members, and clinicians as well as for future research.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 91-101)
Noteby Maliha F. Sheikh
CollectionGraduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.