Published online by Cambridge University Press: 05 June 2012
We suggested in the last chapter how educational attainment levels are closely linked to household income and also to the possibilities of upward social mobility in the United States. While historically some immigrants arrived in the United States with levels of education which may have been greater than those found among long-standing domestic- or foreign-born residents, in general immigrants had lower educational attainment levels than found among the resident population. At the same time most of these immigrants, including those from Latin America and the Caribbean, tended to be better educated than the nonmigrating resident populations of their countries of origin.
In this chapter we will examine educational attainment of all major racial/ethnic groups since 1980, with special attention to educational attainment levels among foreign- and domestic-born Latinos. As is standard for the U.S. Census Bureau, we have adopted the procedure of analyzing the educational attainment levels only for adults 25 years of age and older, that is; the majority of those who have completed their educations. We also will compare domestic-born Latinos to their immigrant parents and then examine different generations to see if change has occurred and how quickly.