The relationships between internet usage and acculturation of the Horn of Africa immigrants in the United States

Thumbnail Image

Persistent link to this item

View Statistics

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


The relationships between internet usage and acculturation of the Horn of Africa immigrants in the United States

Published Date




Thesis or Dissertation


The purpose of this study was to investigate Internet usage and its relationship with the acculturation of the Horn of Africa immigrants residing in urban Minnesota. Technology has and continues to be a cultural amplifier; in just two decades from its initial availability to the general public, the Internet has made geographical differences practically irrelevant, making the world a virtual small village. Social interactions that were once only possible face-to-face can now take place online. This innovation in communication plays a crucial role in the acculturation process of immigrants, allowing them access not only to social media platforms, but mapping tools, translation websites, online banking, video sharing sites and many other potentially empowering resources that affect how they encounter life in their new environments. This study utilizes Berry’s bi-dimensional theory of acculturation to investigate the relationship between Internet usage and acculturation. Berry’s four dimensions of acculturation provide a theoretical guideline for this study. Also employed here are communication theoretical perspectives in studying Internet usage and acculturation. The participants were 292 Horn of Africa immigrants attending English language classes in adult education programs in the upper Midwestern part of the U.S. A series of multiple regression analyses are used to determine the unique contribution of each variable in predicting acculturation. The study revealed statistically significant relationships among Internet social-networking usage and dimensions of acculturation. The most powerful predictor of Internet usage was level of education, often achieved prior to immigrating to the U.S. Internet usage did contribute to integration, the most successful strategy for acculturation of immigrants from this group. Perceived English language competency alone accounted for 15% of the variance in integration and 17% of the variance in assimilation. Based on these findings, path models for Internet usage and acculturation are proposed. Further, implications for both research and practice are discussed.


University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. January 2013. Major:Work and Human Resource Education. Advisor: Rosemarie J. Park. 1 computer file (PDF); vii, 237 pages, appendices A-F.

Related to




Series/Report Number

Funding information

Isbn identifier

Doi identifier

Previously Published Citation

Suggested citation

Woldeab, Daniel. (2013). The relationships between internet usage and acculturation of the Horn of Africa immigrants in the United States. Retrieved from the University Digital Conservancy,

Content distributed via the University Digital Conservancy may be subject to additional license and use restrictions applied by the depositor. By using these files, users agree to the Terms of Use. Materials in the UDC may contain content that is disturbing and/or harmful. For more information, please see our statement on harmful content in digital repositories.