IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/kap/poprpr/v38y2019i6d10.1007_s11113-019-09558-7.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Educational Gradient in Health Among Children in Immigrant Families

Author

Listed:
  • Margot I. Jackson

    (Brown University)

  • Tate Kihara

    (Brown University)

Abstract

Educational inequality in the health of US children—what social scientists refer to as the “educational gradient” in health—is present at birth for virtually every marker of health and increases throughout childhood. However, a puzzling contradiction to this pattern has been observed among the growing population of youth in immigrant families. Some evidence suggests an ambiguous relationship between education and health among immigrant families, with a flat relationship between maternal education and maternal health behaviors and children’s birth outcomes, and a stronger relationship as children become adolescents. Does an educational gradient in health emerge among children in immigrant families during childhood and adolescence? To date, we lack a prospective examination of how the gradient changes from birth throughout childhood and adolescence among this population. Moreover, while the dominant explanation for a weaker gradient among children with immigrant parents centers on the family setting, we know little about family-level dynamics among the same immigrant families as children age. Using national, longitudinal data from the Fragile Families and Child Well-Being Study, we examine the association between maternal education and children’s health (measured by mothers’ ratings) over the early life course (birth through age 15) among children of immigrants and children of native-born parents and consider whether changes in children’s economic status and family composition contribute to the educational gradient, or lack thereof, in child health. Analyses reveal that: (1) maternal education is strongly predictive of health, even among children of immigrants; (2) immigrant status does not appear to be protective for health within educational groups, as evidenced by poorer health among children of immigrants whose mothers have the lowest level of education, as compared to children of natives; (3) children in the least-educated immigrant families are experiencing better health trajectories as they age than children in similar native-born families; and (4) accounting for household economic conditions and family composition does not reduce the size of the education gradient over time among children of immigrants.

Suggested Citation

  • Margot I. Jackson & Tate Kihara, 2019. "The Educational Gradient in Health Among Children in Immigrant Families," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 38(6), pages 869-897, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:poprpr:v:38:y:2019:i:6:d:10.1007_s11113-019-09558-7
    DOI: 10.1007/s11113-019-09558-7
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://link.springer.com/10.1007/s11113-019-09558-7
    File Function: Abstract
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1007/s11113-019-09558-7?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Guillermina Jasso & Douglas S. Massey & Mark R. Rosenzweig & James P. Smith, 2004. "Immigrant Health--Selectivity and Acculturation," Labor and Demography 0412002, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Marmot, Michael G. & Nazroo, James Y., 2001. "Social inequalities in health in an ageing population," European Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 9(4), pages 445-460, October.
    3. Winkleby, M.A. & Jatulis, D.E. & Frank, E. & Fortmann, S.P., 1992. "Socioeconomic status and health: How education, income, and occupation contribute to risk factors for cardiovascular disease," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 82(6), pages 816-820.
    4. Viruell-Fuentes, E.A. & Morenoff, J.D. & Williams, D.R. & House, J.S., 2011. "Language of interview, self-rated health, and the other Latino health puzzle," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 101(7), pages 1306-1313.
    5. Patrick Heuveline & Jeffrey M. Timberlake & Frank F. Furstenberg, 2003. "Shifting Childrearing to Single Mothers: Results from 17 Western Countries," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 29(1), pages 47-71, March.
    6. repec:pri:cheawb:case_paxson_economic_status_paper is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Alberto Palloni, 2006. "Reproducing inequalities: Luck, wallets, and the enduring effects of childhood health," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 43(4), pages 587-615, November.
    8. Janet Currie & Mark Stabile, 2003. "Socioeconomic Status and Child Health: Why Is the Relationship Stronger for Older Children?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1813-1823, December.
    9. Goldman, N. & Kimbro, R.T. & Turra, C.M. & Pebley, A.R., 2006. "Socioeconomic gradients in health for White and Mexican-origin populations," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 96(12), pages 2186-2193.
    10. Anne Case & Darren Lubotsky & Christina Paxson, 2002. "Economic Status and Health in Childhood: The Origins of the Gradient," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1308-1334, December.
    11. Heather Antecol & Kelly Bedard, 2006. "Unhealthy assimilation: Why do immigrants converge to American health status levels?," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 43(2), pages 337-360, May.
    12. Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz, 1999. "The Returns to Skill in the United States across the Twentieth Century," NBER Working Papers 7126, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Balistreri, K.S. & Van Hook, J., 2009. "Socioeconomic status and body mass index among hispanic children of immigrants and children of natives," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 99(12), pages 2238-2246.
    14. repec:pri:cheawb:case_paxson_economic_status_paper.pdf is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Currie, Janet & Stabile, Mark, 2006. "Child mental health and human capital accumulation: The case of ADHD," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(6), pages 1094-1118, November.
    16. Anderson, L.M. & Wood, D.L. & Sherbourne, C.D., 1997. "Maternal acculturation and childhood immunization levels among children in Latino families in Los Angeles," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 87(12), pages 2018-2021.
    17. James P. Smith, 2007. "The Impact of Socioeconomic Status on Health over the Life-Course," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 42(4).
    18. Chen, Edith & Martin, Andrew D. & Matthews, Karen A., 2006. "Socioeconomic status and health: Do gradients differ within childhood and adolescence?," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 62(9), pages 2161-2170, May.
    19. Scott Lynch, 2003. "Cohort and life-course patterns in the relationship between education and health: A hierarchical approach," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 40(2), pages 309-331, May.
    20. Sara Mclanahan, 2004. "Diverging destinies: How children are faring under the second demographic transition," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 41(4), pages 607-627, November.
    21. Franzini, Luisa & Fernandez-Esquer, Maria Eugenia, 2004. "Socioeconomic, cultural, and personal influences on health outcomes in low income Mexican-origin individuals in Texas," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 59(8), pages 1629-1646, October.
    22. Florencia Torche, 2011. "The Effect of Maternal Stress on Birth Outcomes: Exploiting a Natural Experiment," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 48(4), pages 1473-1491, November.
    23. West, Patrick, 1997. "Health inequalities in the early years: Is there equalisation in youth?," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 44(6), pages 833-858, March.
    24. Patrick Denice, 2017. "Back to School: Racial and Gender Differences in Adults’ Participation in Formal Schooling, 1978–2013," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 54(3), pages 1147-1173, June.
    25. Abraído-Lanza, A.F. & Dohrenwend, B.P. & Ng-Mak, D.S. & Turner, J.B., 1999. "The Latino mortality paradox: A test of the 'salmon bias' and healthy migrant hypotheses," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 89(10), pages 1543-1548.
    26. West, Patrick & Sweeting, Helen, 2004. "Evidence on equalisation in health in youth from the West of Scotland," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 13-27, July.
    27. Brian Finch, 2003. "Early origins of the gradient: the relationship between socioeconomic status and infant mortality in the United States," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 40(4), pages 675-699, November.
    28. Margot Jackson, 2009. "Understanding links between adolescent health and educational attainment," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 46(4), pages 671-694, November.
    29. Ariel Kalil & Rebecca Ryan & Michael Corey, 2012. "Diverging Destinies: Maternal Education and the Developmental Gradient in Time With Children," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 49(4), pages 1361-1383, November.
    30. Ilana Redstone Akresh, 2008. "Occupational Trajectories of Legal US Immigrants: Downgrading and Recovery," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 34(3), pages 435-456, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Cartwright, Kate & Chacon, Lauren, 2021. "The impact of immigration-related separation and reunification on children’s education: Evidence from the American Community Survey 2010–2018," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 126(C).

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. David M. Cutler & Adriana Lleras-Muney & Tom Vogl, 2008. "Socioeconomic Status and Health: Dimensions and Mechanisms," NBER Working Papers 14333, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Apouey, Bénédicte & Geoffard, Pierre-Yves, 2013. "Family income and child health in the UK," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 715-727.
    3. Khanam, Rasheda & Nghiem, Hong Son & Connelly, Luke B., 2009. "Child health and the income gradient: Evidence from Australia," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 805-817, July.
    4. Margot I. Jackson & Kathleen Kiernan & Sara McLanahan, 2017. "Maternal Education, Changing Family Circumstances, and Children’s Skill Development in the United States and UK," The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, , vol. 674(1), pages 59-84, November.
    5. Anne Case & Christina Paxson & Tom Vogl, 2006. "Socioeconomic Status and Health in Childhood: A Comment on Chen, Martin and Matthews," Working Papers 157, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Research Program in Development Studies..
    6. Sepehri, Ardeshir & Guliani, Harminder, 2015. "Socioeconomic status and children's health: Evidence from a low-income country," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 23-31.
    7. Fang, Xiangming & Jing, Ruiwei & Zeng, Guang & Linnan, Huan Wan & Zhu, Xu & Linnan, Michael, 2014. "Socioeconomic status and the incidence of child injuries in China," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 33-40.
    8. Margot Jackson & Sara McLanahan & Kathleen Kiernan, 2012. "Nativity Differences in Mothers’ Health Behaviors," The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, , vol. 643(1), pages 192-218, September.
    9. Janet Currie & Mark Stabile & Phongsack Manivong & Leslie L. Roos, 2010. "Child Health and Young Adult Outcomes," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 45(3).
    10. Case, Anne & Lee, Diana & Paxson, Christina, 2008. "The income gradient in children's health: A comment on Currie, Shields and Wheatley Price," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 801-807, May.
    11. Cheolsung Park, 2010. "Children¡¯S Health Gradient In Developing Countries: Evidence From Indonesia," Journal of Economic Development, Chung-Ang Unviersity, Department of Economics, vol. 35(4), pages 25-44, December.
    12. Goode, Alison & Mavromaras, Kostas & zhu, Rong, 2014. "Family income and child health in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 152-165.
    13. Owen O'Donnell & Eddy Van Doorslaer & Tom Van Ourti, 2013. "Health and Inequality," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 13-170/V, Tinbergen Institute.
    14. Shu-Hsi Ho & Wen-Shai Hung, 2013. "A study of the Health of Children Born to Foreign- and Native-Born Mothers in Taiwan," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 34(3), pages 355-368, September.
    15. Dohoon Lee & Margot Jackson, 2017. "The Simultaneous Effects of Socioeconomic Disadvantage and Child Health on Children’s Cognitive Development," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 54(5), pages 1845-1871, October.
    16. Margot Jackson & Kathleen Kiernan & Sara McLanahan, 2010. "Nativity Differences in Child Development across Diverse Populations, Settings and Outcomes: Do Socioeconomic Resources Narrow or Widen the Gap?," Working Papers 1270, Princeton University, School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing..
    17. Irma Elo & Neil Mehta & Cheng Huang, 2011. "Disability Among Native-born and Foreign-born Blacks in the United States," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 48(1), pages 241-265, February.
    18. Janet Currie, 2009. "Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise: Socioeconomic Status, Poor Health in Childhood, and Human Capital Development," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(1), pages 87-122, March.
    19. Apouey, Bénédicte H. & Geoffard, Pierre-Yves, 2016. "Parents’ education and child body weight in France: The trajectory of the gradient in the early years," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 20(C), pages 70-89.
    20. Fernando Riosmena & Rebeca Wong & Alberto Palloni, 2013. "Migration Selection, Protection, and Acculturation in Health: A Binational Perspective on Older Adults," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 50(3), pages 1039-1064, June.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:poprpr:v:38:y:2019:i:6:d:10.1007_s11113-019-09558-7. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Sonal Shukla or Springer Nature Abstracting and Indexing (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.