Date of Conferral







Leann Stadtlander


Black women are more than twice as likely as White women to experience losing their infants in the first year of life. The purpose of this quantitative study was to examine relationships between maternal discriminatory stress and negative birth outcomes such as preterm delivery, low birth weight, very low birth weight, and infant death among Black women with varying levels of education. This study was grounded in critical race theory and Black feminist theory, positing that Black women are the sum of intersecting identities that shape their world view. A sample of 107 Black women were recruited by convenience and snowball sampling. Using an exploratory quantitative design, maternal racial and discriminatory stress data were collected using the Jackson, Hogue, and Phillips Contextualized Stress Measure survey; data were analyzed using chi-square and Pearson correlations. Data analyses based on 3 research questions found (a) the 5 maternal racial and discriminatory stress subscales (burden, race, work, support/coping, and stress) and education showed non-significant relationships; (b) significant positive relationships between the 5 subscales and negative birth outcomes (preterm delivery, low birth weight, very low birth weight, and infant death); and (c) a significant positive relationship between highest degree earned and very low birth weight. These results can be used to develop culturally competent professional development training for health care practitioners who interact with and serve this population. Presenting the results in forums for the general population of Black women may help provide awareness of the issues and empowerment.