All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

William Cockerham

Advisory Committee Members

Mark Lagory

Casey Borch

John Van Sant

Michael Howell-Moroney

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) College of Arts and Sciences


This is a pilot study contending that limited language proficiency is associated with disability outcomes for Chinese-, Japanese-, and Korean-speaking Americans in the United States, as determined by application of the Disablement Process model. Using the 5 percent public-use micro-data samples (PUMS) from the United States Census 2000, this study explores the relationship by employing a Poisson regression on these three language groups from a comparative perspective. The findings shed light on the significant effects of limited language proficiency as a predisposing risk factor on disability outcomes and also demonstrate the importance of individual, family, and community characteristics as either interventions or exacerbators. The results of this study should encourage immigrants to learn English and call attention to the needs for equal and comprehensive healthcare services for people who are from diverse ethnic backgrounds.