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Date of Award

Spring 2023

Document Type

Masters Thesis

Department or Program Affiliation

Experimental Psychology

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Mallinckrodt, Brent

Second Advisor

Lehman, Barbara J.

Third Advisor

Smith, Aaron J.


Extensive research exists regarding the challenges and risk of negative outcomes first-year students face while transitioning into college. Given that psychosocial factors predict adaptive coping and adjustment in the presence of transition stressors, this study examined the efficacy of mindfulness and social support trainings in fostering psychosocial skills and adjustment among college freshmen. Fifty Western Washington University first-year students (75.7% white, 13.5% Hispanic or Latinx, 12.2% Asian, 4.1% Black, 1.4% Native American or Alaska Native, and 9.5% multiracial) participated. Students were randomly assigned to one of the two trainings and were measured pre- and post- training on psychosocial skills (mindfulness, social support, emotion regulation) and indicators of adjustment (psychological distress, perceived stress). Neither training group showed significant changes regarding psychosocial skills, psychological distress, or perceived stress. These null findings showcase important considerations when designing trainings to improve psychosocial skills in hopes of promoting positive adjustment for first-year college students.




adjustment, psychosocial, mindfulness, social support, stress, psychological distress


Western Washington University

OCLC Number


Subject – LCSH

Mindfulness (Psychology)Social networks; College freshmen; Social adjustment; Distress (Psychology)




masters theses




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