The Educational Attainment of Second Generation Immigrants in Canada: Analysis based on the General Social Survey
Using data from the 2001 General Social Survey, this study focused on differences in educational attainment between the children of immigrants to Canada, referred to as second-generation immigrants, and similarly-aged children of Canadian-born parents. Two definitions of second-generation immigrants were introduced. The first considered a Canadian resident with at least one immigrant parent to be a second-generation immigrant, while the second definition required that both parents were foreign-born. All first-generation immigrants were excluded from the sample, except those who had arrived in Canada at the age of 9 or younger; these young immigrants were then included among the second-generation immigrants. The results show that second-generation immigrants did better in terms of schooling attainment than their peers born to Canadian parents. Although a part of the observed difference was explained by differences in individual characteristics, a significant disparity remained even after controlling for them. Moreover, the main result of the children of immigrants being, on average, more educated than the children of the Canadianborn was robust towards different definitions of second-generation immigrants, and held for both men and women.
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