Adjustment of India Missionaries

Fleming, Robert Leland

     The subject of this study, 'Adjustment of India Missionaries' Children in America,' implies that American children with a foreign background may have to face some problems of adjustment which are not in the experience of children reared in America. . . . This research is an attempt to explore intimately the background as well as the present-day experiences of 88 young people between the ages of twenty-five and thirty-five, who grew up in India and who came to America for their college education' and to discover what adjustment situations they did face and how they handled them. . . . A thesis study by Parker, 'Factors in the Personality Development of Children of Missionaries,' [Unpublished Master's thesis, Divinity School, University of Chicago, 1936] . . . was a descriptive account of background factors in the lives of students who attended Woodstock School in India, the same institution from which this study population was selected. . . .The purpose of the present study . . . [is] to continue the investigation from the point where Parker left it and to follow up these students through their transitional period in America, during college and into adult life where they experienced vocational and marital adjustments.
     After an introductory chapter setting out the problem for research and guiding principles, the study offers an analysis of the study population and an evaluation of a body of organized background-material in physical, intellectual, social, and economic areas around which this study was built. After discussing how this study was set up, the paper presents the statistical treatment of the group check-list scores along with evaluations and a series of personality studies in which adjustments are related to physical, intellectual, social, and economic areas. Evaluation of adjustment factors for each area are made throughout the study.
     [T]his research project was begun in 1939 and carried on through 1946. About one hundred students made up this study population. All had attended Woodstock School, Mussoorie United Provinces, North India, between the years of 1929 and 1938.
     The hypotheses considered in this study are the following: (1) Individuals who chose professional vocations adjusted better than those who chose nonprofessional vocations. (2) Individuals in this population adjusted better in a small college than in a large one. (3) Individuals from a more liberal religious background adjusted better than those from a conservative religious background. (4) Individuals who attended Woodstock after 1934 made a better adjustment than those who attended before that year. (5) Individuals who spend a great time in the boarding department adjusted better than those who spent less time in the boarding department. (6) Individuals who finished high school at Woodstock adjusted better than those who finished in America. (7) Younger siblings adjusted better than older siblings.

Robert J. Havinghurst (chair), Mandel Sherman, Stephen M. Corey