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Language training, language proficiency and earnings of immigrants in Norway

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  • John Hayfron
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    Abstract

    This paper uses a simple probit model to determine the impact of language training on the language proficiency of Third World immigrant men in Norway. It also estimates the labour market returns to Norwegian language proficiency. The results show that immigrants who participate in language training programme are more likely to acquire speaking and reading proficiencies in Norwegian language than those who do not. Contrary to expectation, language proficiency has no significant effect on immigrants' earnings. A probable explanation may be that immigrants need Norwegian language proficiency to get into jobs in the Norwegian labour market. Once they are in employment, their wages are not necessarily determined by their proficiency in Norwegian. Consistent with the assimilation hypothesis, earlier waves of immigrants have higher earnings than do more recent waves, and part of the initial earnings deficit experienced by more recent immigrants can be attributed to language deficiency. There was no evidence of sample selection bias in the earnings equation.

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    File URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00036840010018630
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Applied Economics.

    Volume (Year): 33 (2001)
    Issue (Month): 15 ()
    Pages: 1971-1979

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    Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:33:y:2001:i:15:p:1971-1979

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    Cited by:
    1. Olof Åslund & Mattias Engdahl, 2013. "The value of earning for learning: Performance bonuses in immigrant language training," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1303, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
    2. Eli Berman & Kevin Lang & Erez Siniver, 2000. "Language-Skill Complementarity: Returns to Immigrant Language Acquisition," NBER Working Papers 7737, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Saarela, Jan & Finnas, Fjalar, 2006. "Can the low unemployment rate of Swedish speakers in Finland be attributed to structural factors?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 498-513, June.

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