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Educational achievement of second‐generation immigrants: an international comparison

  • Christian Dustmann
  • Tommaso Frattini
  • Gianandrea Lanzara

This paper investigates the educational achievements of second generation immigrants in several OECD countries in a comparative perspective. We first show that the educational achievement (measured as test scores in PISA achievement tests) of children of immigrants is quite heterogeneous across countries, and strongly related to achievements of the parent generation. The disadvantage considerably reduces, and even disappears for some countries, once we condition on parental background characteristics. Second, we provide novel analysis of cross-country comparisons of test scores of children from the same country of origin, and compare (conditional) achievement scores in home and host countries. The focus is on Turkish immigrants, whom we observe in several destination countries. We investigate both mathematics and reading test scores, and show that the results vary according to the type of skills tested. For mathematics, in most countries and even if the test scores achievement of the children of Turkish immigrants is lower than that of their native peers, it is still higher than that of children of their cohort in the home country - conditional and unconditional on parental background characteristics. The analysis suggests that higher school quality relative to that in the home country is important to explain immigrant children’s educational advantage

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Article provided by CEPR & CES & MSH in its journal Economic Policy.

Volume (Year): 27 (2012)
Issue (Month): 69 (01)
Pages: 143-185

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Handle: RePEc:bla:ecpoli:v:27:y:2012:i:69:p:143-185
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  1. Christian Dustmann & Stephen Machin & Uta Schönberg, 2010. "Ethnicity and Educational Achievement in Compulsory Schooling," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(546), pages F272-F297, 08.
  2. Bisin, Alberto & Patacchini, Eleonora & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2011. "Ethnic Identity and Labor-Market Outcomes of Immigrants in Europe," Research Papers in Economics 2011:2, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
  3. Gould, Eric D & Lavy, Victor & Paserman, M. Daniele, 2005. "Does Immigration Affect the Long-Term Educational Outcomes of Natives? Quasi-Experimental Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 5439, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Ira N. Gang & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 1999. "Is Child Like Parent? Educational Attainment and Ethnic Origin," Departmental Working Papers 199614, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  5. Bauer, Thomas K. & Lofstrom, Magnus & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2000. "Immigration Policy, Assimilation of Immigrants and Natives' Sentiments towards Immigrants: Evidence from 12 OECD-Countries," IZA Discussion Papers 187, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Yann Algan & Christian Dustmann & Albrecht Glitz & Alan Manning, 2009. "The Economic Situation of First- and Second-Generation Immigrants in France, Germany and the United Kingdom," CEP Discussion Papers dp0951, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  7. repec:ese:iserwp:2010-34 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Christian Dustmann & Nikolaos Theodoropoulos, 2008. "Ethnic minority immigrants and their children in Britain," University of Cyprus Working Papers in Economics 7-2008, University of Cyprus Department of Economics.
  9. Horst Entorf & Nicoleta Minoiu, 2005. "What a Difference Immigration Policy Makes: A Comparison of PISA Scores in Europe and Traditional Countries of Immigration," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 6(3), pages 355-376, 08.
  10. Brunello, Giorgio & Rocco, Lorenzo, 2013. "The effect of immigration on the school performance of natives: Cross country evidence using PISA test scores," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 234-246.
  11. Ludger Wossmann, 2005. "The effect heterogeneity of central examinations: evidence from TIMSS, TIMSS-Repeat and PISA," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(2), pages 143-169.
  12. George J. Borjas, 2004. "Do Foreign Students Crowd Out Native Students from Graduate Programs?," NBER Working Papers 10349, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Riphahn, Regina T., 2001. "Cohort Effects in the Educational Attainment of Second Generation Immigrants in Germany: An Analysis of Census Data," IZA Discussion Papers 291, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. Carliner, Geoffrey, 1980. "Wages, Earnings and Hours of First, Second, and Third Generation American Males," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(1), pages 87-102, January.
  15. Betts, Julian, 1998. "Educational Crowding Out: Do Immigrants Affect the Educational Attainment of American Minorities?," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt8vt7f1bh, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  16. Dronkers, Jaap & Heus, Manon de, 2009. "Negative selectivity of Europe’s guest-worker immigration?," MPRA Paper 22213, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  17. Nicole Schneeweis, 2011. "Educational institutions and the integration of migrants," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 24(4), pages 1281-1308, October.
  18. Elke Lüdemann & Guido Schwerdt, 2010. "Migration Background and Educational Tracking: Is there a Double Disadvantage for Second-Generation Immigrants?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3256, CESifo Group Munich.
  19. David Card & Christian Dustmann & Ian Preston, 2005. "Understanding attitudes to immigration: The migration and minority module of the first European Social Survey," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0503, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  20. George J. Borjas, 2006. "Making it in America: Social Mobility in the Immigrant Population," NBER Working Papers 12088, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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