Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Faculty of Science

First Advisor

Michael Pratt

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


Pre-enrollment university expectations can influence subsequent adjustment levels during the first year of postsecondary studies (Aspinwall & Taylor, 1992). There is very limited literature studying the expectation levels of visible minority students in the U.S., and no literature at all in a Canadian context. We were interested in examining expectation differences between visible minority students and majority students attending Canadian universities, as well as exploring the influence of residence status and campuswide diversity on these expectation levels. We further used regression analyses to predict subsequent university adjustment using pre-enrollment expectations as predictor variables, and used structural equation modeling (SEM) to explore the role of students’ perceptions of university support as a mediator for the expectations-adjustment relationship. Using an initial sample of 2913 students from six campuses across Canada, we found that: a) visible minority students expected a less academically successful experience when compared to majority students, but there were no differences between minority and majority students in social expectations; b) students planning to live at home (more often visible minority students) were not as prepared for the upcoming experience as the students planning to live on campus during university; c) students attending schools with greater ethnic and cultural diversity in our sample reported lower levels ofpositive academic and social expectations than students attending predominantly White schools; d) university expectations predicted adjustment levels across four years of university, and e) perceived university support mediated the relationship between preenrollment expectations and subsequent adjustment levels across time. These patterns of support and adjustment predictions did not differ by minority/majority status.

Convocation Year


Included in

Psychology Commons