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Immigrant Students and Higher Education: ASHE Higher Education Report 38:6



Immigrant Students and Higher Education: ASHE Higher Education Report 38:6

Eunyoung Kim, Jeannette Diaz

ISBN: 978-1-118-61415-0 March 2013 Jossey-Bass 152 Pages


Immigrant populations, growing quickly in both size and diversity, have become an important segment of the U.S. college student population, one that will profoundly transform the educational landscape and workforce in coming decades. Nevertheless, immigrant students in higher education are often inaccurately characterized and largely misunderstood.

In response to this alarming disconnect, this monograph reviews and synthesizes the existing body of literature on immigrant students, with special attention placed on transitions to college and collegiate experiences. The authors lay a foundation for future research and draw out implications for policies and practices that will better serve the  educational needs of this growing population.

This is the 6th issue of the 38th volume of the Jossey-Bass series ASHE Higher Education Report. Each monograph is the definitive analysis of a tough higher education issue, based on thorough research of pertinent literature and institutional experiences. Topics are identified by a national survey. Noted practitioners and scholars are then commissioned to write the reports, with experts providing critical reviews of each manuscript before publication.

Executive Summary vii

Foreword xi

Acknowledgments xv

Introduction, Context, and Overview 1

Why Focus on Immigrants? 2

Immigrant as a Conceptual Term 4

Definitions of Key Terms 7

Limitations of the Monograph 10

Organization of the Monograph 11

A Context for Immigration in the United States 12

Theoretical Foundation: Immigrant Student College Transition and Persistence 25

Neo-Racism 26

Social-Ecological Model 27

Acculturation and Assimilation Th eories 30

Social Capital Th eory 36

Conclusion 45

Access to Higher Education for Immigrant Students 47

Generational Status 48

Socioeconomic Status 49

English Language Profi ciency 52

Parental Involvement and Expectations 55

Financial Aid 57

Conclusion 60

Collegiate Experience of Immigrant Students 61

College Adjustment and Persistence 62

Psychological Development and Acculturation 65

Social Identity Development 68

Career Aspirations and Development 72

Conclusion 74

Undocumented Students and Higher Education 77

Background on Undocumented Immigrants 79

Federal Legislation and Undocumented Students 80

State Approaches to Undocumented Students and Higher Education 84

Opposition to In-state Tuition Rates for Undocumented Students 88

Conclusion 89

Immigrant Students and Community Colleges 91

Relevant Research on Immigrants at Community Colleges 93

Issues Related to Immigrant Students in Community Colleges 97

Innovative Programs for Educating Immigrants 102

Conclusion 105

Concluding Th oughts 109

Suggestions for Future Research 110

Implications for Policy and Practice 112

Conclusion 114

Notes 117

Appendix 121

References 135

Name Index 157

Subject Index 163

About the Authors 169