and Lifelong Learning Resource Base
Materials for Teaching,
Research and Policy Making
Investigator: David W. Livingstone
M. Raykov, K. Pollock, F. Antonelli
Other Topics in
Learning and Work
Immigrants, Work and Learning [PDF]
1. Alfred, M. V.
(2003). Sociocultural contexts and learning: Anglophone
Caribbean immigrant women in U.S. postsecondary education.
Adult Education Quarterly, 53(4), 242-260.
study framed by sociocultural theory involved 15 British Caribbean women
immigrants in the United States. Home country culture and early schooling
involved learning experiences in the host country. They faced challenges
in negotiating language and identity. Length of time in the new culture,
level of social support, and sociocultural environment influenced
Acculturation; Adult Learning; Cultural Context; Females;
Immigrants; Learning Processes; Postsecondary Education; Socialization;
2. Bey, M. (2003). The Mexican
child: From work with the family to paid employment. Childhood, 10(3),
author considers the role of the work in the socialization of children who
grow up in conditions of extreme poverty. Based on research among families
of seasonal migrant agricultural labourers form the south of Mexico coming
to work in the north of the country. One of the few options open to these
peasant families, the author argues that it also represents an effective
form of socialization that enables children to prepare for their future.
The article discusses the conditions surrounding the children's work and
schooling, whether the minimum age of employment should be enforced, and
presents the dilemma of whether it is best for children to pursue waged
labour or school education.
Child Work; Family; Mexico; Migration; Formal Training;
Employment and Education; "At Risk".
Capps, R., Fix, M., Passel, J., Ost, J., & Perez-Lopez, D. (2003).
A profile of the low-wage immigrant workforce.
Immigrant families and workers. Facts and perspectives brief. Washington
DC: Urban Institute.
Immigrants compose an increasingly large share of the US labor force and
growing share of low-wage workers. Immigrants' hourly wages are lower on
average than those for natives. Immigrant workers are much more likely
than native workers to drop out of high school. Three-fourths of all US
workers with less than a ninth grade education are immigrants. Nearly
two-thirds of low-wage immigrant workers do not speak English
proficiently, and most of these workers have little formal education. Two
of every five low-wage immigrant workers are undocumented. While the
low-wage native labor force is mainly female, men dominate the low-wage
immigrant labor force. Even though they are less likely to participate in
the labor force, female immigrant workers are better educated and more
likely to be in the country legally than male immigrants. Foreign-born
women earn substantially lower wages than foreign-born men and native
women. Although immigrants dominate a few low-wage occupations, such as
farming and private household work, immigrants in these occupations
represent a small share of all immigrant workers. There are more
foreign-born workers in low-skilled manufacturing and services.
Dropout Rate; Educational Attainment; Employment Patterns;
English (Second language); Immigrants; Labor Force; Language Proficiency;
Limited English Speaking; Second Language Learning; Sex Differences; Urban
Areas; Wages; Formal Training; Employment and Education; "At Risk".
4. Carreon, G. P., Drake, C.,
& Barton, A. C. (2005). The importance of presence: Immigrant parents'
school engagement experiences. American Educational Research Journal,
authors have been engaged in research focused on how parents in
high-poverty urban communities negotiate understandings and build
sustaining relationships with others in school settings. In this article,
the authors draw upon ethnographic methodology to report on the stories of
three working-class immigrant parents and their efforts to participate in
their children's formal education. Their stories are used as exemplars to
illuminate the challenges immigrant parents face as they work to
participate in their children's schooling. In contrasting the three
stories, the authors argue that parental engagement needs to be understood
through parents' presence in schooling, regardless of whether that
presence is in a formal school space or in more personal, informal spaces,
including those created by parents themselves.
Immigrants; Parents; Parent Participation; Parent School
Relationship; Parent Student Relationship; Urban Education; Urban Areas;
Poverty; Working Class; Economically Disadvantaged; Parent Role.
5. Cavallaro, F. (2005).
Language maintenance revisited: An Australian perspective. Bilingual
Research Journal, 29(3), 561-582.
Language maintenance has been an issue debated whenever languages come
into contact. This paper presents a detailed discussion of the reasons
most often cited as to why languages should be maintained, with a specific
focus on Australia because of the country's multilingual makeup. Australia
currently has about 150 aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages
still in use, and more than 100 languages other than English are spoken by
its immigrant population. However, these diverse language resources have
been allowed to steadily decline. The arguments for the maintenance of
Australia's languages are categorized loosely based on Thieberger's (1990)
work and each of the arguments is discussed: (a) group intergrity and
group membership, (b) identity, (c) cultural heritage, (d)
social-humanitarian and economic implication, (e) assimilation, and (f)
cognitive development and academic achievement. This paper argues that
there are many apparent advantages to maintaining languages.
Language Maintenance; Multilingualism; Indigenous
Populations; Languages; Group Membership; Cultural Background; Cognitive
Development; Acculturation; Academic Achievement; Foreign Countries;
Sociolinguistics; Immigrants; Ethnic Groups; Racial Identification;
6. Department of Labor.
(2001). No longer children: Case studies of the living and working
conditions of the youth who harvest America's crops. Washington, DC:
Examined are the living and working conditions of adolescent migrant
farmworkers. Interviews with 216 youth working during peak harvest time in
6 states, as well as with adult farmworkers, family members of working
youth, and farm labor contractors. Most of the youth were 14-17 years old,
although a few had begun work as early as age 11; were overwhelmingly
male; and were living on their own. Few were US citizens or legal
residents. Originating primarily in Mexico and Guatemala, a surprising
proportion were indigenous. Adolescent farmworkers lived in the most
marginal conditions within an already marginalized population. Extremely
crowded housing was substandard. The 70% of interviewees had only an
elementary education or less. Those with at least some secondary education
were generally interested in furthering their education. Migrant youth
working in agriculture suffered many threats and risks to both their
physical and mental health. Extensive recommendations are made concerning
needs for longitudinal research to guide initiatives; educational program
designs to serve out-of school migrant youth, particularly in the areas of
English language learning, numeracy, and lifelong learning skills;
expanded eligibility for federal job training programs; enhanced legal
protection of working youth and enhanced enforcement housing; and new
strategies to manage the influx of migrant youth into the US farm labor
Adolescents; Agriculture; American Indians; Child Labor;
Educational Needs; Elementary/ Secondary Education; Labor Conditions;
Mexicans; Migrant Education; Migrant Health Services; Migrant Housing;
Migrant Youth; Public Policy; Social Network; Undocumented Immigrants;
Work Environment; "At Risk".
7. Duff, P., Wong, P., &
Early, M. (2002). Learning language for work and life: The linguistic
socialization of immigrant Canadians seeking careers in healthcare. The
Modern Language Journal, 86, 397-422.
article discusses research on ESL for the workplace, identifying gaps in
the existing literature and promising directions for new explorations. A
qualitative study was conducted in one type of program for immigrant women
and men in Western Canada seeking to become long-term resident care aides
or home support workers. The study examined the linguistic and social
processes at work in the education and integration of immigrant ESL
speakers into the workforce and the broader community; the issues
participants in such programs face; and the insights that can be gleaned
for understanding language socialization in this context. Of particular
interest was the contrast observed in one such program between the focus
on medical and general English language proficiency, as well as nursing
skills, and the actual communication requirements within institutions with
large numbers of staff and patients who do not speak English, and who, in
the case of elderly, may also face communication difficulties associated
with ageing, illness, and disability. Implications for future research and
curriculum development are discussed.
Immigration; ESL; Western Canada; "At Risk".
8. Gallo, M. (2001). Immigrant
workers' journeys through a new culture: Exploring the transformative
learning possibilities of photography. Studies in the Education of Adults,
examines how the use of learner-generated photography in an English as a
Second Language (ESL) curriculum influenced knowledge production of
migrant workers in the U.S. Data were obtained from 23 immigrant workers
who participated in the 26-week project. Results show that the use of
learner-generated photography in the ESL classroom served as an impetus
for sharing stories and beginning conversations, helping learners to see
connections between past and present experiences. The use of photography
also prompted a number of issues to be raised concerning such topics as
racism, low wages, work inequalities, unsafe working conditions, &
difficulties faced in obtaining citizenship. The project resulted in 5
transformative outcomes that helped learners both inside & outside the
work space. These were critical reflection, creation of knowledge,
communication, community building, and change-making.
Immigrants; Education; Great Britain; English as a Second
Language; ESL; Transformation Theory; Adult Learning; Photography in
Education; "At Risk".
9. Goldberg, M., & Corson, D.
(2001). Minority languages learned informally: The social construction of
language skills through the discourse of Ontario employers. NALL Working
Paper No. 22. Toronto: Centre for the Study of Education and Work,
OISE/UT. Available at: http://www.nall.ca/.
immigrants, refugees, and aboriginal Canadians learn their own languages
in the normal, informal way. These minority languages learned informally
are not valued as a skill that yields returns in the labor market in the
same way the official languages or formally learned languages do. What
counts as a skill in a society, in a given point in time, is the product
of complex phenomenological, social, economic, ideological, and political
processes. Discourse is key to this process of social and cultural
reproduction. The discourse of Ontario employers socially constructs the
definition of what counts as a skill in Ontario workplaces and thus what
warrants value in the labor market. The notion of skill is a construction
that is socially created and hence changeable. If we want to change the
unjust situation that affects the speakers of minority languages, we need
to change the discourse surrounding minority languages to one that truly
values minority languages as skills worth conserving, maintaining, and
putting to use.
Adult Education; Bilingualism; Canada Natives; Developed
Nations; Discourse Communities; Employer Attitudes; Employment Potential;
Foreign Countries; Immigrants; Indigenous Populations; Informal Education;
Job Skills; Language Attitudes; Language Minorities; Native Speakers;
Refugees; Ontario; "At Risk"; Immigrant Workers; Refugees.
10. Greenberg, E., Macias, R.
F., Rhodes, D., & Chan, T. (2001). English literacy and language
minorities in the United States. Education Statistics Quarterly, 3(73-75).
data from the National Adult Literacy Survey, explores the English fluency
and literacy of U.S. adults whose native language is not English, their
fluency and literacy in their native language, and their employment
patterns and earnings. Data show that only nonnative English speakers with
low levels of formal education were truly disadvantaged in the labor
market by their lack of English native language skills.
Educational Attainment; Employment Patterns; English
(Second Language); Income; Labor Market; Language Minorities; Language
Proficiency; Literacy; "At Risk".
11. Grognet, A. G. (1997).
Integrating employment skills into adult ESL instruction. Washington, DC:
Office of Educational Research and Improvement.
paper discusses employment preparation and how it can be integrated into
English-as-a-second -language (ESL) curriculum in a workplace or standard
adult ESL program. It chronicles the historical link, since federal
legislation in 1964, between employment and adult education and the
relationship of employment and ESL instruction with the large influx of
immigrants from the '70s. Distinctions between workforce and workplace
instruction is discussed, noting trends since the 1970s. Research on both
linguistic skills and other workplace skills needed in the workplace is
reviewed briefly, and 5 areas of workplace competency identified in a
major federal report by the Secretary of Labor's Commission on Achieving
Necessary Skills (SCANS) are detailed. Ways in which ESL practitioners can
teach the SCANS skills are briefed, and other ways in which they can
advance workplace ESL instruction are identified.
Adult Education; Educational Needs; Employment Patterns;
English (Second language); Job skills; Labor Force Development; Language
Proficiency; Language Role; Language Usage; Limited English Speaking;
Literacy Education; On-the-Job Training Second Language Instruction;
Vocational Education; Vocational English (Secondary language); Work
Environment; "At Risk".
12. Kadkhoda, A. (2002).
Assisting foreign trained immigrant professionals. In G. R. Walz, R. L.
Knowdell & C. Kirkman (Eds.), Thriving in challenging and uncertain times
(pp. 105-110). Greensboro, NC: ERIC/CASS Press.
often career counselors hear of, or work with, unemployed or underemployed
foreign trained immigrant professionals. With the globalization of economy
and shortages in skilled labor in Canada, the number of immigrant
professionals is on the rise. It is becoming clear that services and
programs are necessary to assist such individuals to ensure their
contribution to the economy and smooth transition into a new country.
However, the traditional job search and career development programs do not
necessarily address the concerns and challenges that this group faces.
This chapter identifies some of these challenges and proposes new programs
and initiatives that may better address some of these concerns.
Career Counseling; Counseling Techniques; Employment
Services; Immigrants; Job Search Methods; Professional Occupations;
13. Leventhal, T., Xue, Y., &
Brooks-Gunn, J. (2006). Immigrant differences in school-age children's
verbal trajectories: A look at four racial/ethnic groups. Child
Development, 77(5), 1359-1374.
study explored inter- and intra-individual immigrant group differences in
children's English verbal ability over ages 6-16 in 4 racial/ethnic groups
- White Americans, Black Americans, Mexican Americans, and Puerto Ricans
(N=2,136). Although all children's mean verbal scores increased with age,
immigrant children (except for Black Americans) had lower scores than
respective nonimmigrant children. In contrast, immigrant children (except
for Mexican Americans) had more persistent verbal growth into adolescence
than respective nonimmigrant children. Family resources moderately
accounted for immigrant differences in children's mean verbal scores only.
The findings support different theoretical models for understanding inter-
and intraindividual immigrant differences in achievement. Mexican-American
immigrants and Black American nonimmigrants were struggling and merit
Immigrants; Verbal Ability; English (Second Language);
Mexican Americans; African Americans; Puerto Ricans; Scores; Whites;
Children; Academic Achievement; Models; Racial Differences; Ethnic Groups;
Second Language Learning.
14. McBrien, J. L. (2005).
Educational needs and barriers for refugee students in the United States:
A review of the literature. Review of Educational Research, 75(3),
1975, the United States has resettled more than 2 million refugees, with
approximately half arriving as children. Refugee children have traumatic
experiences that can hinder their learning. The United Nations has
specified in conventions, and researchers have concurred, that education
is essential for refugee children's psychosocial adjustment. However,
government officials, public opinion, and researchers have often differed
about what is best for refugees' healthy acculturation. On the basis of a
large-scale longitudinal study of the children of immigrants and refugees,
Portes and Zhou (1993) suggested the theory of segmented assimilation,
which accounts for diverse entry situations and receptions of immigrant
and refugee populations. This review uses their theory to consider the
needs and obstacles to education for refugees, and interventions for
Refugees; Students; Literature Reviews; Educational Needs;
Acculturation; Well-Being; Second Language Learning; Parent Influence;
Rejection (Psychology); Stereotypes; Bias; Social Discrimination; Muslims;
Student Experience; United States.
15. McEachron, G., & Bhatti,
G. (2005). Language support for immigrant children: A study of state
schools in the UK and US. Language, Culture and Curriculum, 18(2),
recent decades, immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers have sought a new
way of life in large numbers, often leaving their countries of origin
behind in search of places that offer a better way of life. The purpose of
this study was to investigate how elementary and middle school students in
state schools in Reading, England (primarily speakers of Asian languages),
and Richmond, Virginia (primarily speakers of Spanish), were supported
academically, when most children's first language was not English. The
authors were interested in exploring whether or not there were cultural or
structural differences in the way each country helped or hindered these
students as they progressed through the school systems. Three UK schools
in a district of approximately 100,000 and three US schools in a district
of approximately 250,000 were the focus of this exploration from 2000 to
2003. Findings indicated that there were cultural and legislative
differences and similarities. Teachers and administrators in both
countries attempted to provide services with limited and sometimes
diminishing resources. Community support varied based on resources,
attitudes toward various ethnic groups, and the coping strategies adopted
by these groups in their new environments. Marked differences appeared
with regard to the manner in which assessments took place and how the
results were made available to the public.
Foreign Countries; Standardized Tests; Coping; Community
Support; Immigrants; Elementary School Students; Middle School Students;
Cultural Differences; English (Second Language); Second Language Learning;
Educational Policy; Academic Achievement; Teaching Methods; England;
Monzo, L. D., & Rueda, R. (2003). Shaping
education through diverse funds of knowledge: A look at one Latina
paraeducator's lived experiences, beliefs, and teaching practice.
Anthropology & Education Quarterly, 34(1), 72-95.
Examined how the experiences of a Mexican immigrant para-educator
translated into beliefs and teaching, using the "funds of knowledge"
concept to consider her experiences as critical to teaching. Results
indicated that she had markedly different experiences from mainstream
educators, yet numerous factors worked against using them for instruction.
Her beliefs about teaching and learning stemmed from her experiences and
the meanings she constructed from them.
Cultural Influences; Diversity (Faculty); Elementary
Education; Hispanic Americans; Mexican Americans; Paraprofessional School
Personnel; Personal Narratives; Prior Learning; Funds of Knowledge.
17. Moran, T. T., & Petsod, D.
(2003). Newcomers in the American workplace: Improving employment outcomes
for low-wage immigrants and refugees. California: Rockefeller Foundation,
New York, NY.; Ford Foundation, New York, NY.; Hitachi Foundation,
First-generation immigrants play a crucial role in the U.S. economy, but
despite their pivotal role many immigrant workers confront enormous
challenges in the labor force. The immigrant population increased from
19.8 million in 1990 to 31.1 million in 2000, comprising 11.1% of the U.S.
population and 12.4% of the nation's workforce. Immigrants are expected to
account for half of the working-age population growth between 2006 and
2015 and for all of the growth between 2016 and 2035, yet they are
concentrated in low-skill, low-pay jobs. Some of the challenges that keep
immigrants in working poverty are as follows: (1) immigration status; (2)
inaccessibility of job training and placement programs; (3) rarity of
job-based benefits; (4) ineligibility for government programs; and (5)
discrimination and exploitation in the workplace. Some of the
recommendations to funders to improve conditions are as follows: (1)
enhance language access to programs; (2) integrate job training with
English-acquisition and cultural orientation; (3) develop workforce
programs that forge multisector partnerships; (4) help immigrants gain
fair recognition and receive accreditation for their skills and education;
(5) successfully educate children of immigrants; (6) educate and develop
the leadership of immigrant workers; (7) protect immigrant workers who
risk intimidation for union activities; and (8) improve public policy,
employer practices, and economic outcomes for low-wage immigrants.
Access to Education; Employer Attitudes; Employment
Practices; Employment Projections; English (Second Language); Equal
Opportunities (Jobs); Immigrants; Institutional Cooperation; Intercultural
Programs; Job Placement; Job Training; Labor Conditions; Labor Force;
Labor Force Development; Policy Formation; Population Trends; Public
Policy; Second Language Learning; Unskilled Workers; Working Poor.
18. Orellana, M. F. (2001).
The work kids do: Mexican and Central American immigrant children's
contributions to households and schools in California. Harvard Educational
Review, 71(3), 366-389.
Research on Mexican and Central American immigrant children illuminates
their everyday work as helpers in the home, community, and school. Their
participation is shaped by gender dynamics. Their work can be viewed in
multiple ways as volunteerism, learning opportunities, and cultural and
Child Labor; Children; Family Financial Resources;
Housework; Immigrants; Mexicans; Sex Role; Central America.
19. Parrenas, R. S. (2001).
Servants of globalization: Women, migration, and domestic work. Stanford,
CA: Stanford University Press.
book offers a study of migrant Filipina domestic workers who leave their
own families behind to do the mothering and caretaking work of the global
economy in countries throughout the world. It specifically focuses on the
emergence of parallel lives among such workers in the cities of Rome and
Los Angeles, two main destinations for Filipina migration. The book is
largely based on interviews with domestic workers, but it also portrays
the larger economic picture as domestic workers from developing countries
increasingly come to perform the menial labor of the global economy. This
is often done at great cost to the relations with their own split-apart
families. The experiences of migrant Filipina domestic workers are also
shown to entail a feeling of exclusion from their host society, a downward
mobility from their professional jobs in the Philippines, and an encounter
with both solidarity and competition from other migrant workers in their
communities. The author applies a new theoretical lens to the study of
migration-the level of the subject, moving away from the two dominant
theoretical models in migration literature, the macro and the
intermediate. At the same time, she analyzes the three spatial terrains of
the various institutions that migrant Filipina domestic workers
inhabit-the local, the transnational, and the global. She draws upon the
literature of international migration, sociology of the family, women's
work, and cultural studies to illustrate the reconfiguration of the family
community and social identity in migration and globalization. The book
shows how globalization not only propels the migration of Filipina
domestic workers but also results in the formation of parallel realities
among them in cities with greatly different contexts of reception.
Women; Employment; Foreign Countries; Filipinos; Women
Domestics; Alien Labor; Philippine; Emigration; Government Policy.
20. Sedlezky, L., Anderson,
L., Hewitt, A., O'Nell, S., Sauer, J., Larson, S., et al. (2001). The
power of diversity: Supporting the immigrant workforce. Washington,
DC: National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research.
curriculum was designed to teach frontline supervisors of community-based
services and programs that provide supports to persons with developmental
disabilities. The curriculum is based on a set of identified competencies
for frontline supervisors and the findings of a series of focus groups
that were conducted by the Institute on Community Integration with direct
support professionals, frontline supervisors and administrators from
agencies in Minnesota. Issues, challenges, and benefits of new immigrants
entering the direct support workforce were identified during the focus
groups, and the materials presented in this curriculum are designed to
address these challenges. Specific modules address: (1) understanding
diversity; (2) building a cohesive team by supporting immigrant workers;
(3) orienting and training the immigrant worker; and (4) recruiting,
hiring, and organizational practices that support immigrant workers. The
training curriculum consists of both a facilitator guide and a learner
guide. The facilitator guide is designed to be used by trainers and
facilitators who have a good understanding of the issues. Step-by-step
instructions are provided in the guide for each activity. The learner
guide is to be used as a workbook during the training and as a reference
Adults; Children; Community Programs; Curriculum;
Disabilities; Employer Employee Relationship; Human Services; Immigrants;
Minimum Competencies; Organizational Change; Organizational Climate;
Organizational Effectiveness; Recruitment; Social Agencies; Social Work;
Social Workers; Supervisors; Supervisory Methods; Training; Methods;
21. Wilkinson, L. (2002).
Factors influencing the academic success of refugee youth in Canada.
Journal of Youth Studies, 5(2), 173-193.
study examines the education experiences of refugee youth in Canada. Using
data obtained from a random sample of 91 refugee youths between the ages
of 15 and 21, plus data from 123 of their parents, the purpose of this
study is to identify the factors influencing their educational success.
The study finds that the majority of refugee youth are doing well in the
education system, with about 50 per cent expecting to complete high school
and to continue to post-secondary education. The remaining 30 per cent are
experiencing some difficulty finishing high school and about 20 per cent
do not expect to finish their secondary education. Ethnicity, refugee camp
experience, appropriate grade placement on arrival, parents' health, urban
residence, and number of months in Canada are correlated with academic
Academic Achievement; Education Experiences; Youth;
Educational Background; Refugees; Canada; "At Risk"; Refugees.