Children of Immigrants and Educational Expectations: The Roles of School Composition
University of Massachusetts - Amherst
Understanding the educational processes of children of immigrant specifically, and all students more broadly, as the immigrant population grows in U.S. schools.
Journal Name or Institutional Affiliation:
Teacher College Record
Vol. 112, No. 6, pp. 1679-1704
- The child of an immigrant is, on average, about 8% more likely to expect a graduate degree than a nonimmigrant.
- High-ability schools are not associated with lower expectations for children of immigrants to the extent that they are for nonimmigrant's (and conversely, low-ability schools are not associated with higher expectations to the same extent).
- Although nonimmigrants may follow the commonly accepted comparative and normative school-effect associations for SES and ability, children of immigrants do not.
- The hypothesis that students in schools with higher proportions of immigrants will have higher expectations is only partially supported.
- The hypothesis that children of immigrants are differentially impacted by school composition compared with nonimmigrants and in ways that may counter established theory also has mixed results.
- Immigrant status is actually associated with lower expectations in higher SES schools, all else being equal.
- Children of immigrants do not have their expectations lowered to the same degree as nonimmigrants when in a higher ability environment. Children of immigrants have relatively higher expectations in that higher achieving, more competitive environment, all else being equal.
- Children of immigrants appear to be differentially impacted by school composition.
- That children of immigrants are differentially negatively impacted by higher SES schools and differentially positively impacted by higher ability schools - may mean that special college counseling could be targeted at children of immigrants in these types of schools.
- Immigrant students' higher average expectations are less affected by the school. However, because children of immigrants still enroll in college in lower than expected proportions, one cannot assume that this "positive" effect on expectations will be sufficient for actual social mobility.
Journal Article Empirical Research
Composition, Expectations, Immigrants, SES
Secondary Survey Data
Method of Analysis:
12th grade students
Unit of Analysis:
- Data comes from the Educational Longitudinal Study (ELS:2002/2004).
- DV: Whether a 12th grade student expects to complete a graduate or professional degree.
- IV: Immigrant status (either immigrant or children of immigrant), interactions between immigrant dummy variable and each of the school-composition variables of interest, aggregate SES of school, Aggregate ability of school, Racial composition of school, immigrant composition of school, etc.