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The effect of immigration status on physics identity and physical science career intentions Documents

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The effect of immigration status on physics identity and physical science career intentions 

written by Florin D. Lung, Geoff Potvin, Gerhard Sonnert, and Philip M. Sadler

Using data collected from a nationally-representative sample of first-year college students, we examine how students' identity development as physics persons and their likelihood to pursue a career in physical science is predicted by differing immigrant experiences. We consider broad factors having a social, economic, or cultural nature as covariates in a propensity score model that assesses differences due to immigrant generation. Our results show that, when controlling for such factors as race/ethnicity, socio-economic status, and gender, students' physics identities and the likelihood of choosing a career in physical science are significantly higher amongst first generation students than second generation (or later) students. We conclude that physical science as a career option can be influenced by the experiences of being an immigrant and through the relationship between origin and host culture.

Published February 6, 2012
Last Modified April 25, 2012

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