UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Student interaction and negative mental health effects : evaluating black students’ perceptions of racial climate at a Canadian university Charles, Jada


Black students attending Canadian universities face a number of unique challenges and stressors that shape their experiences and mental health outcomes on campus. Utilizing 12 in-depth interviews with Black students at a large, metropolitan university in Western Canada, my findings show that Black students navigate instances of everyday racism on campus and in the classroom. Consequently, Black students experience negative mental health effects, forms of alienation, and social isolation. In response, these students adopt various coping mechanisms, such as modifying their behaviour to avoid discrimination and minimizing the importance of distressing interactions to negate feelings of anxiety and depression. More broadly, I illuminate the heterogeneity of Black student experience on campus, problematize current models of campus racial climate and outline culturally responsive equity and diversity initiatives that universities can implement in Black student populations.

Item Media

Item Citations and Data


Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International