Faculty Fellow Deborah Johnson Receives Best Paper Award

August 17, 2016

Deborah Johnson, professor of human development and family studies and faculty fellow in the Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives, received the Most Outstanding Paper Award from the Journal of Black Psychology for the paper "Community Violence and Racial Socialization: Their Influence on the Psychological Well-Being of African American College Students." Deborah’s co-authors are Meeta Banerjee and Stephanie J. Rowley from the University of Michigan.

In their study, the authors looked at the links between exposure to community violence (witnessing or being a victim) and racial socialization and psychological well-being in a study of 281 African American college students. Their results show that “racial socialization (the primary vehicle of cultural transmission for African American families, steeped in a tradition of resistance to oppression; see Rodriguez, McKay, & Bannon, 2008 and Stevenson, Davis, & Abdul-Kabir, 2001) buffers the effects of community violence exposure on mental health outcomes.”

The study is part of Johnson’s larger portfolio of work focused on racial socialization processes and adds to the growing body of knowledge noting that racial socialization is a critically important protective process in African American families.

Courtesy Department of Human Development and Family Studies