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Coping With Uprooting Stress During Domestic Educational Migration in China

  • Alexander S. English (a1) and Daniel S. Worlton (a2)

For many youth, attending university is their first extended time away from home, and uprooting stress can often lead to distress. The present research examines the impact of uprooting stress on educational Chinese migrants and how students cope with the unanticipated pressure of leaving home. Using a sample of recent first-year students, we employed a longitudinal design that allowed us to examine the interaction effect of coping strategies (primary and secondary coping) and stress at time 1 and their impact on anxiety at time 2. Results indicated primary coping exerted an interaction effect on stress, exacerbating the negative effects and leading to more anxiety at time 2, but secondary coping did not. Females also reported lower stress and anxiety. In conclusion, the impact of uprooting stress and coping on psychological symptoms suggests further research on internal Chinese migration should consider the impact of within-culture variation in Mainland China.

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This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (, which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Corresponding author
Address for correspondence: Alexander S. English, Intercultural Institute at the Shanghai International Studies University, SISU, PO Box 359, Shanghai 2000083, China. Email:
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