Educational Achievement and Attainment Differences Among Minorities and Immigrants

  • Phoebe HoEmail author
  • Grace Kao
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)


The U.S. student population is increasingly comprised of racial/ethnic minority and immigrant students. Drawing on national-level data, we document the gaps in educational achievement and attainment for minority and immigrant students that are apparent at all levels of education, from early education through postsecondary schooling. These achievement gaps reflect, in part, the broader racial and ethnic hierarchy of the U.S., but the experiences of immigrant-origin minority students additionally contribute to the complexity of racial and ethnic stratification in education. Though research shows that socioeconomic status accounts for much of the differences in achievement, factors such as schools and teachers, peer relationships, and neighborhoods and communities may also contribute to the variation in academic outcomes.


Race/ethnicity Minority students Immigrant students Educational achievement Educational attainment Achievement gap Early education Primary education Secondary education Postsecondary education 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.Department of SociologyYale UniversityNew HavenUSA

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