Subject Area



This study examines the relationship between transracial adoption and racial and ethnic identity development from a parent’s perspective. By listening to stories and hearing experiences of these parents, the writer was able to obtain an idea regarding how the family as a whole views race and how the child expresses his or her differences within the family context. A review of the literature indicates that transracial adoption is an ongoing debate because of the importance of finding a permanent placement for a child and the potential loss of a cultural heritage by not living with a family of the same race or ethnicity. This study is a qualitative exploratory study, involving semi-structured interviews with five families who have adopted transracially. The main findings of this study are that the participants have largely adopted a colorblind approach when raising their children, that the children of these participants bring up questions or concerns about being different from their parents, and that exposure to people of the same race or ethnicity as the children varied family to family. The implications of this study include more in depth interviews with more families, interviewing transracially adopted children, and providing trainings and support groups for families adopting or having adopted transracially.


Providence College


Spring 2011









A project based on independent investigation, submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirement for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Social Work. Originally written for the Theory Practice Seminar, Providence College, 2011.

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