Mental Health Promotion: Theimpact of a Culturally Attuned Mindfulness Program on Wellbeing and Academic Performance Among Muslim College Women
Mindfulness has grown in prominence in recent decades. Its efficacy has been an important contributor to its
acceptance and proliferation. Although secularised, mindfulness-based interventions are derived from Eastern spiritual
traditions, particularly Buddhism. For this reason, there is a need to explore the efficacy and acceptability of such approaches
among individuals committed to theistic traditions such as Islam. This study examines the impact of a culturally adapted
version of mindfulness based on bridging concepts that communicate key aspects of these interventions in a manner more
culturally attuned and religiously resonant with the worldviews of Muslim clients. Muslim college women (N= 30), citizens
of the United Arab Emirates, were randomly assigned to either an 8-week mindfulness program or a weighting list condition.
Measures of depression, stress reactivity and academic performance were collected at time one and time two. The
experimental group improved significantly (less depressive symptoms and stress reactivity). However there was no
difference between the groups concerning academic performance. The results are discussed in relation to culturally attuning
mindfulness and its use within educational contexts .
Keywords: Mindfulness, Muslim, Depression, Culture, Academic Performance