Mild psychotic experiences among ethnic minority and majority adolescents and the role of ethnic density

Lizzy Eilbracht, Gonneke W. J. M. Stevens*, J. T. W. Wigman, S. van Dorsselaer, Wilma A. M. Vollebergh

*Corresponding author for this work

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Despite evidence of the increased risk of psychotic disorders among ethnic minority adults, little is known about the effect of ethnic minority status to mild psychotic experiences among adolescents. This study investigated mild psychotic experiences in ethnic minority and majority adolescents in a Dutch representative general population sample, and tested the ethnic density effect in the classroom. The CAPE was used to assess mild psychotic experiences among Dutch (n = 3,606) and non-Western ethnic minority pupils (n = 769). Ethnic minority adolescents showed higher levels of grandiosity and delusions than their ethnic majority peers, whereas no differences were found for hallucinations, paranormal beliefs and paranoia between both groups of adolescents. The ethnic density effect was partly confirmed for the ethnic majority: a decrease of ethnic majority pupils in class increased their feelings of paranoia. Because only some dimensions of mild psychotic experiences were affected by ethnic minority status or the interaction between ethnic minority status and ethnic class composition, our findings emphasize that mild psychotic experiences are multifactorial in origin, with different underlying processes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1029-1037
JournalSocial Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2015


  • Mild psychotic experiences
  • CAPE
  • Ethnic minority status
  • Adolescence
  • Ethnic density

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