Date of Award

12-2009

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Applied Sociology

Advisor

Haller, William

Committee Member

Granberg , Ellen

Committee Member

Mobley , Catherine

Abstract

This thesis examines the effects of ethnic identity on assimilation behaviors in second generation immigrants. It looks at two types of ethnic identity--one that is an internal, self-identification and one that is an external, objective designation. More specifically, this study reviews the effects of ethnic identity on how well a respondent writes a foreign language, how well a respondent writes English, language the respondent prefers to speak, total monthly earnings, and highest level of education achieved. This study hypothesizes that various ethnic self-identifications and various nationalities will be predictors of various assimilation pathways set forth in the segmented assimilation theory. Data used in this thesis are from the Children of Immigrants Longitudinal Study. Multiple types of regression are used to determine the effects, if any, of ethnic identity on the various behaviors tested. Findings indicate that both measures of ethnic identity do have a significant effect on assimilation behaviors. The results, however, also suggest that more research is needed to better understand the multifaceted relationship between ethnic identities and assimilation pathways.

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