Title page for ETD etd-0211103-135707

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Robicheaux, Sally
Author's Email Address srobic1@lsu.edu
URN etd-0211103-135707
Title Perceptions of Social Support within the Context of Religious Homophily: A Social Network Analysis
Degree Master of Arts (M.A.)
Department Sociology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Jeanne S. Hurlbert, Committee Chair
John J. Beggs Committee Member
Yang Cao Committee Member
  • homophily
  • social support
  • social networks
Date of Defense 2002-12-13
Availability unrestricted
Recent studies have documented (1) the direct effects of social network context on perceived adequacy of social support and (2) the indirect effects of social network context, through social support, on psychological well-being. This thesis extends that research by asking how religious homophily in social networks affects individual perceptions of support and, through that, psychological well-being (depression). Results indicate that being embedded in a network with greater religious homophily increases perceived support, but this relationship holds only for instrumental support. Additionally, both instrumental and expressive support exert significant affects on psychological well-being: greater perceived adequacy of support (both instrumental and expressive) decreases reports of depression. These findings suggest that future research in this area should explore more fully how specific types of homophily affect social support and depression.

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