School performance

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Studies on school performance that have included Asian Americans are primarily based on pan-ethnic comparisons with Whites, Blacks, Latinos, and American Indians. Rarely have studies examined differences among Asian Americans such as by sub-ethnic groups or generational/immigrant status. In addition, studies of ethnic differences in school performance, or of Asian American school performance in particular, have primarily been with high school students. The review below provides an overview of performance across the whole trajectory of schooling, and includes studies of Asian American sub-ethnic and generational groups.

Whereas Asian Americans often score similarly to whites and higher than other underrepresented groups in reading and verbal tests, Asian Americans outperform whites in terms of their overall or average grades (GPA), grades in math, and test scores in math (Bempechat, Nakkula, Wu, & Ginsburg, 1996; Huang & Waxman, 1985; Jose & Huntsinger, 2005; Kao, 1995; Kao & Thompson, 2003; Mau, 1997; Okagaki & Frensch, 1998; Stone, 1992; Whang and Hancock, 1994). However, this overall finding is mostly for students in later elementary, middle, and high school, but not necessarily in the transition to school or in college. With the transition to school, there is an early advantage for Asian American preschoolers and kindergarteners but is not necessarily maintained in the first grade, and does not apply to skills in English (Hausken, Brimbhall, and Pollack, 2001; Huntsinger, Jose, Larson, Krieg, and Shiligram, 2000; Huntsinger, Jose, Liaw, and Ching, 1997; Denton & West, 1998; West, 2000; West, Denton, and Reaney, 2002).

Transition to School & Elementary School

Studies focused on performance in the transition to school include those based on nationally-representative samples, i.e., The Early Childhood Longitudinal Study (ECLS), and also those of a smaller-scale with non-representative samples. Although the ECLS followed children through the end of the fifth grade, these data have only recently been collected. Thus, the findings, reported below, involving nationally representative samples of elementary school children beyond the second grade are primarily based on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) (2003). There are additional smaller-scale studies that have focused on tests scores and grades for later elementary school students, in addition to studies that have examined non-traditional indicators of school performance (i.e., grade retention and qualification to programs for the gifted).

Transition to School: The Early Childhood Longitudinal Study

The Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 1989-99 (ECLS-K), sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), is based on a nationally representative sample of 22,000 kindergarteners who attended about 1,000 kindergarten programs during the 1998-1999 school year. They were followed through the end of fifth grade on a battery of reading and mathematics tests. Based on this data, West, Denton, and Reaney (2000) report on both the overall gains that white-non-Hispanic, black-non-Hispanic, Asian American, and Hispanic American children made during the kindergarten year in reading and mathematics. Asian American children had the highest reading and mathematics scores in both fall and spring of their Kindergarten year, and also the highest increases or change across the year in reading and mathematics, with one exception in that whites also had similar rates of change in mathematics as Asian Americans. Specific skills in reading (i.e., letter recognition, beginning and ending sounds, sight words, and words in context) and mathematics (i.e., number and shape, relative size, ordinality sequence, addition/subtraction, multiplication/division) were also reported for each ethnic group with greater proportions of Asian American children possessing these skills than children from all other ethnic groups.

In follow up analyses of these children when they were in the first grade, Denton and West (2002) reported that almost all Asian American first-graders (97 to 100%) have reading skills in letter recognition and beginning/ending sounds, and 90% and 64% of them can read sight words and words in context, respectively. This is compared to the next highest proportions, those of White children, with 99%, 96%, 88%, and 53%, respectively possessing the above skills. The proportion of Asian American children with specific math skills was very high and identical to the proportion reported for white children. However, a greater proportion of white first-graders (82%) possessed skills in addition/subtraction than Asian American first-graders (79%). Thus, although Asian American children enter kindergarten with higher reading and math skills and to maintain that advantage in reading through the year, by first grade, white children are catching up to Asian Americans in math skills, and are even exceeding them in addition/subtraction.

Hausken, Brimbhall, and Pollack (2001) focused on language minority children (i.e., those children whose home language is not English), and found that Asian-language children had higher proficiency in reading (i.e., letter names, beginning sounds, and ending sounds) than children from Spanish-language homes. These researchers also report that higher percentages of Asian-language children could read sight words and short passages (7% and 4%, respectively) than either non-language minority (2%, and less than 1%, respectively) and Spanish-language children (less than 1% for either skill).

Transition to School: Smaller-Scale Study of Chinese Americans

Huntsinger, Jose, Liaw, and Ching (1997) conducted a study examining the mathematics skills of white American children, second-generation Chinese American children (born in the U.S. to immigrant parents), and also children in Taiwan that were in preschool and kindergarten during 1993-1994. Based on the Test of Early Mathematics Abilities-2 (TEMA-2), they found both the Chinese American and Taiwanese children had higher informal and formal mathematics skills than white American children. Huntsinger, Jose, Larson, Krieg, and Shiligram (2000) then also followed up two years (in 1995-1996) and four years later (in 1997-1998) the Chinese American and white American children in order to examine not only their mathematics skills, but also their vocabulary and reading skills. They report that at all three time points the Chinese Americans had higher performance in math. In fact, by time 3, when they were in the third and fourth grades, Chinese American children consistently outperformed white American children on every subtest of the Sequential Assessment of Mathematics Inventory. With receptive English vocabulary, however, white American children outscored Chinese American at both time 1 and time 2, but by time 3, the Chinese Americans had caught up to the white Americans. This catch up by the Chinese American children is remarkable given the fact that English was their second language. However, these studies were comprised of well-educated (all parents had graduate degrees or bachelor’s degrees), two-parent families, and thus the performance differences between these groups may not reflect what would be found if both had been based on a more representative samples.

Elementary School: The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)

In 2003 the NAEP conducted mathematics and reading assessments of 187,581 fourth-grade students and 155,183 eighth-grade students attending approximately 10,000 schools across the nation. Nationally representative samples of students attending both private and public schools were assessed on three mathematical abilities (conceptual understanding, procedural knowledge, and problem solving based on 45 questions) and a number of different reading abilities (based on one or two passages with 10 questions) at each grade level. With mathematics performance in grade 4, Asian/Pacific Islanders had the highest average proficiency scores at 246, followed by Whites with 243, American Indians with 223, Hispanics with 222, and Blacks with 216. Asian/Pacific Islanders also the highest average math scores for every year that mathematics was assessed (1990, 1992, 1996, 2000, and 2003) with the exception of 1996 in which Whites were higher (232 compared to 229 for Asian/Pacific Islanders). With reading performance in grade 4, Whites had the highest average proficiency scores at 229, followed by Asian/Pacific Islanders at 226, American Indians at 202, Hispanics at 200, and Blacks at 198.

Elementary School: Smaller-Scale Studies

Other smaller-scale studies that did not rely on nationally-representative samples also report higher math test scores for Asian American elementary school students compared to Whites and other ethnic minority groups (Bempechat, Nakkula, Wu, and Ginsburg, 1996; Okagaki & Frensch, 1998; Whang and Hancock, 1994). Based on a study conducted by Whang and Hancock of 4th through 6th graders, consisting of 137 Asian American and 216 non-Asian American (predominantly white students, but also some black and Hispanic students), Asian students had higher math test scores (using the CTBS and the MAT-6) than non-Asians. Also, based on a sample of 94 South East Asian (Vietnamese and Cambodian), 100 white, 125 African American, and 66 Hispanic 5th and 6th graders, Bempechat, Nakkula, Wu, and Ginsburg found that the South East Asian students had higher math test scores (using the Wide Range Achievement Test, WRAT) than all other ethnic groups.

Additionally, Okagaki and Frensch (1998) in their study of 75 Asian American, 109 Latino, and 91 European American fourth and fifth graders, provided ethnic group differences in the grades. They found a significantly greater proportion of Asian American students (over 50%, just under 50%, and approximately 45%) received a grade of “A” in math, reading, and language than both whites (approximately 30% for each subject) and Hispanics (just under 20% for each subject).

Finally, in addition to the studies above that have reported on traditional indicators of school performance, other studies have rates of grade retention and those in programs for the gifted (Kao, Tienda, & Schneider, 1996; Kitano and DiJiosia, 2000). Kao, Tienda, and Schneider report on the percentage of youth that have ever repeated a grade in the kindergarten through fourth grades and also the fifth through ninth grades. Significantly lower percentages of Asian Americans (6% and 2%, respectively) repeating a grade than whites (8% and 4%, respectively), blacks (14% and 11%), and Hispanics (12% and 7%). Based on rates of those students from a large school district that qualified for Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) services in 1998-1999, Kitano and DiJiosia reported that while Asian Americans comprised 18.28% of the total enrollment, 21.03% of them qualified for the gifted program. Chinese Americans represented the largest proportion of any subgroup at 50.47%, followed by Koreans at 47.44%, Asian Indians at 45.45%, and Japanese Americans at 41.30%.

Middle School

In addition to the NAEP assessments of students in grade 8, The National Education Longitudinal Study (1988) (NELS-88) is another study of school performance in middle school that relied on a nationally-representative sample. The NELS included a number of school performance indicators, and is described further below. There are also additional studies, based on non-representative samples of middle-school students that include Asian American students or draw comparisons between Asian Americans and other ethnic groups on test scores for reading, mathematics, and science, and GPA and grades in particular subjects.

The NAEP Studies

Based on the NAEP (2003) of mathematics and reading performance, described above, for 155,183 students in grade 8, just as in grade 4, Asian/Pacific Islanders had the highest average proficiency scores in math at 291, followed by Whites with 288, American Indians with 263, Hispanics with 259, and Blacks with 252. Asian/Pacific Islanders also the highest average math scores for every year that mathematics was assessed (1990, 1992, 2000, and 2003). With reading performance in grade 8, Whites had the highest average proficiency scores at 272, followed by Asian/Pacific Islanders at 270, American Indians at 246, Hispanics at 245, and Blacks at 244.

The National Education Longitudinal Study (NELS)

A number of studies have relied on the nationally representative sample of eighth grade students from the National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988 (NELS-88) in order to compare the performance of Asian Americans with other ethnic groups. Just as with the NAEP, this data was collected by the National Center for Education Statistics. The original sample consisted of 24,599 students that were non-Hispanic white, Hispanic, African American, American Indian, or Asian in eighth grade from 1,035 public and private schools with all students participating in standardized tests in math, science, reading, and social studies, and reporting on their grades in four subject areas, English, mathematics, science, and social studies. Based on their review of studies involving the NELS data set, Kao & Thompson (2003) have reported Asian Americans having the highest grade point averages. Studies have also compared performance on tests of reading, math, and science. One study that relied on composites scores from reading and math tests found that Asian Americans had higher scores than blacks, Latinos, and Native Americans, but not whites (Peng & Wright, 1994). Another study that focused on East Asians (Chinese, Japanese, and Koreans) found they had higher math and science test scores than all other ethnic groups, including Whites (Sun, 1998).

Based on the NELS-88 data, Kao (1995) examined differences in school performance between whites and a number of Asian subgroups (Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Southeast Asian, Pacific Islander, South Asian, West Asian). With reading and math test scores, all Asian subgroups were comparable to each other with the exception that Pacific Islanders were lower on both scores. Relative to whites, Chinese, Koreans, and Southeast Asians had higher math scores but similar reading scores, whereas Filipinos, Japanese, South Asians, and West Asians had comparable math and reading scores. Pacific Islanders had lower math and reading scores than whites. The above differences remained significant even after controlling for SES, gender, and material and other educational resources, and immigrant status of the mother. With grades, Chinese, Koreans, Southeast Asians, and South Asians earn significantly higher grades than the comparison group of West Asians, whereas Filipinos, Japanese, and Pacific Islanders earn similar grades relative to West Asians. However, these differences were no longer significant after controlling for the above covariates. Relative to Whites, Chinese, Koreans, Southeast Asians, and South Asians earn higher grades, whereas Filipinos, Japanese, Pacific Islanders, and West Asians earn similar grades, even after controlling for the SES, educational resources, and student characteristics, mentioned above.

Smaller-Scale Studies

In other smaller-scale studies focused on reading, mathematics, and science tests, Asian Americans outperformed other groups in mathematics and science (Baratz-Snowden, Rock, Pollack, & Wilder, 1988; Muller, Stage, & Kinzie, 2001). Studies reporting on grades have found that average grades, and grades received specifically in math, also appear to be higher for Asian American than other ethnic groups, including whites (Baratz-Snowden, Rock, Pollack, & Wilder, 1988; Huang and Waxman, 1985).

High School

The studies of high school students include other indicators of school performance such as, drop out rates and types of courses taken in high school. In addition, studies relying on the NELS follow up have also included analyses of sub-ethnic and generational differences among Asian Americans.


The most recent NAEP assessment of mathematics performance for students in grade 12 was in 2000, and included science performance as well. The science assessment was first conducted with fourth, eighth, and twelfth graders in 1996. Asian/Pacific Islander students once again, just as in grades 4 and 8, had the highest mathematics performance with an average score of 319, followed by Whites with an average score of 308, American Indians with 293, Hispanics with 283, and Blacks with 274. Asian/Pacific Islanders also had the highest math performance across all the years of math assessment since 1990. With performance in science, Whites twelfth graders (154) were slightly higher than Asian/Pacific Islander twelfth graders (153), who were higher than American Indians (139), Hispanics (128), and Blacks (123).

The most recent NAEP assessment of reading performance for students in grade 12 was in 2002, and included writing performance as well. With reading and writing, Whites had the highest average scores in both (292 and 156, respectively), followed by Asian/Pacific Islanders (286 and 152, respectively).

The National Education Longitudinal Study (NELS)

Based on the NELS-88 data, described above, students in the eighth grade were followed up in spring 1990, when most of the cohort was in the tenth grade, and in spring of 1992, when most had completed their senior year of high school. Studies have examined GPAs (based on self-reported grades in four subject areas) for Asian Americans, whites, blacks, and Hispanics, and found that Asian Americans had the highest GPAs in tenth grade than all other groups, including whites (Kao, 1995; Kao, Tienda, and Schneider, 1996; Kao & Thompson, 2003). However, Broh (2002) found that by the twelfth grade, Asian American students had higher English and math grades than African American, Latino, and American Indian students, but similar math grades as Whites, after controlling for school performance in the tenth grade and SES factors of family income, parental education, family structure, in addition to participation in interscholastic sports, student’s gender, and school characteristics.

Although Peng and Wright (1994), mentioned above, had found Asian Americans in eighth grade had similar composite reading and math scores as Whites, by the tenth grade, they were higher than whites in their combined reading and math scores (Mau, 1997). Finally, by the twelfth grade, after controlling for test scores in the tenth grade, SES, and the other covariates described above, Asian Americans were higher on both math and reading than Whites, African Americans, Latinos, and American Indians (Broh, 2002).

NELS data by subethnic & generational groups. Based on the second follow-up data of the NELS in 1992, Blair and Qian (1998) compared the GPAs of different subethnic groups of Asian Americans. They found that Chinese students received the highest GPAs, followed closely by Koreans and South Asians. Japanese and Filipino students had the lowest average grades. Studies relying on the NELS data set have also examined generational differences among Asian Americans in tests of math, reading, science, and social studies, and found that second generation youth outperformed their first- and third-generation counterparts (The National Center for Education Statistics, 1998; Zhang, 2003). Zhang found that at each grade level, second generation youth had higher scores in math, reading, science, and social studies than first- and third-generation youth, and that first-generation youth had higher science scores (in grades 10 and 12 only), and math and social studies scores than third-generation. However, differences between first- and second-generation students on all tests except reading were no longer significant after accounting for SES, ethnic origin, and language factors. First-generation students also outperformed third-generation in math and science, even after controlling for the above factors. In addition, Zhang (2003) examined generational differences in the rates of changes in test scores, after controlling for the above at each grade level. First- and second-generation students had similar growth rates in mathematics, reading, and science than second-generation, but the second generation had higher rates of change in social studies than the first generation. The math and science test scores of first- and second-generation Asian Americans increased at significantly higher rates than that of their third-generation counterparts, and social studies scores of second-generation youth also increased at a higher rate than did third-generation youth.

Smaller-Scale Studies of Subethnic and Generational Differences

Mouw and Xie (1999) found that Chinese American youth had significantly higher math scores than Pacific Islanders, South Asians, Filipinos, Southeast Asians, and Other Asians, and also higher grade-point averages than the latter three groups, even after accounting for socio-economic and immigrant status, and language fluency. Based on course grades in both math and English for middle and high school students, Fuligni (1997), and Fuligni and Witkow (2004) reported higher grades for East Asians (Chinese, Japanese, and Koreans) in both subjects than Filipinos. Thus, taken together with the NELS findings described above, it appears that Chinese in particular have the highest, and Filipinos perhaps the lowest, grades and test scores than other ethnic groups.

In a study that included two generations of Chinese immigrants, Chao (2001) reported that both first- and second- generation Chinese students received significantly higher grades and reported higher level of school effort than White students. In addition, first-generation Chinese students received significantly higher grades than second-generation Chinese students, but both generations were similar in their school effort.

High School and Beyond Study & Additional Studies on Drop Outs

The High School and Beyond data, developed by The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) provides base-year information on approximately 28,000 students who were high school seniors in 1980. Approximately 12,000 students were followed up in 1982, 1984, and 1986. The base-year information includes demographic and other background information, college experiences, work history, and high school grades and ability tests prepared for this data collection. Based on this data, Kao and Thompson (2003) report that Asian Americans had the lowest percentage of drop outs (14%) than other groups (17% of whites, 29% of Native Americans, 28% of Mexican Americans, and 26% of Puerto Ricans). Additional studies, not based on the High School and Beyond data, find that dropouts were less likely to be Asian American than Latino, African American, or White (The National Center for Education Statistics, 1998; Rumberger et al., 1990).

Additional School Performance Outcomes: Types of Courses

Also, Kao and Thompson (2003) report, based on the National Center for Education Statistics of 1997, that a greater proportion of Asian American high school seniors (51%) were more likely to be in college preparatory courses than other ethnic groups (46% of whites, 36% of blacks, 31% of Latinos, and 23% of Native Americans).

Fuligni (1997) also reports that a greater proportion of East Asians (40%) were more likely to take advanced math classes (e.g. Algebra 2) in the tenth grade than Filipinos (20%), Caucasian Americans (20%), and Latinos (7%), and that a vast majority of East Asians (over 80%) were also likely to be in college placement English compared to 58%, 48%, and 24% of Filipinos, Caucasians, and Latinos, respectively.


Although the above studies have found that Asian Americans have higher grades in elementary, middle, and high school, this is not necessarily the case in college. Data on performance in college has been based on nationally-representative data sets such as the High School and Beyond Study and the Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study. It also includes data from an entire cohort of entering freshman at specific universities, such as University of California, Berkeley and also Los Angeles, and also from the entire University of California system.


Sue and Abe (1988) reported on the high school grade-point averages, scores on the Scholastic Aptitude Tests (SAT) and the College Board Achievement Tests, and the GPAs in freshman year of all Asian American and white students who enrolled in the eight University of California campuses in 1984. Asian Americans had higher high school GPAs, but similar GPAs in their first year of college (i.e., Asian Americans 2.74, and whites 2.72). Other studies also report similar college GPAs for Asian Americans and whites, but higher college GPAs for Asian Americans compared to ethnic minority groups (Castro & Rice, 2003; Tan, 1994).

However, studies focused specifically on students attending the University of California, Berkeley, have reported lower college GPAs for Asian Americans compared to Whites (Thomson, 1998; Ying et al., 2001). Ying et al. reports for all students enrolled in spring 1995, Whites had higher mean GPAs (3.18) than Asian Americans (3.05) who had higher GPAs than Hispanics (2.86) and African Americans (2.71).

Additional studies have also reported lower college GPAs for Asian Americans than Whites or non-Asians (Toupin & Son, 1991; Tseng, 2000). A study by Toupin and Son of all Asian American students who attended a small, private, highly selective university in the Northeast in 1984, 1985, and 1986 in the College of Arts and Science found that Asian Americans had lower GPAs than non-Asians (matched on socio-economic background and SAT scores). They also were more likely to be placed on academic probation, and less likely to appear on the Dean’s List at least one time. A report by Tseng (2000), based on a sub-sample of 1,200 entering students at New York University in 1996 and 1998, also found that Whites had higher college GPAs than Asian Americans.

Tseng (2000) points out that these lower college GPAs among Asian Americans may be due to their being disproportionately enrolled in math and science courses, where on average, students receive lower grades than in other courses. Studies do find that a greater proportion of Asian American students are math/science majors or enroll in math and science courses than other ethnic groups (Ahn Toupin & Son, 1991; Tan, 1994; Tseng, 2000; Xie & Goyette, 2003). However, Tseng found that differences in GPAs between Asian and White students remained when controlling for course of study. Thus, the lower GPAs of Asian students at NYU were not due to their course of study. Tseng found that differences in GPA were somewhat explained by their experiences with prejudice and discrimination.

SAT Scores

In their report of all freshman students enrolled in the eight University of California campuses in 1984, Sue and Abe (1988) found that Asian Americans had higher math scores (on both the SAT and College Board Achievement Tests) than whites, but they had lower verbal SAT and English College Board Achievement Test scores than whites. More current data compiled by the Office of Analysis and Information Management at the University of California, Los Angeles (2004) of their incoming freshman from 1991 to 2004, as well as data compiled by the Office of Student Research at the University of California, Berkeley (2000) of their incoming freshman from 1983 to 2000, also indicate that Asian Americans had consistently lower SAT verbal scores than Whites, but higher math scores. However, Asian and White differences in verbal scores diminished from 47 points to 17 points between 1991 and 2004 among UCLA students, and from 50 to 10 points between 1983 and 2000 among UC Berkeley students.

Subethnic Group Differences

In their analyses of all freshman students enrolled in the eight University of California campuses in 1984, Sue and Abe (1988) reported on both the high school GPAs and SAT scores of different subethnic groups of Asian Americans. With high school GPA, they found East Indians/Pakistanis had the highest GPAs (3.8) followed by Japanese (3.75) and Chinese (3.73), and Filipinos the lowest (3.56). All subethnic groups had higher mean GPAs than whites (3.59) with the exception of Filipinos (3.56). With SAT verbal and math scores, East Indians/Pakistanis had the highest verbal scores (520.0), followed by the Japanese (510.8) and Chinese (473.4), and Koreans the lowest (417.8), whereas the Chinese had the highest math scores (611.8) followed by East Indians/Pakistanis (605.8), Japanese (603.8), and Koreans (594.0). Only the East Indians/Pakistanis had higher verbal SAT scores than whites (512.4), whereas all the subethnic groups had higher math SAT scores than whites (576.9) with the exception of Filipinos (519.5) and Other Asian Americans (555.9).

College Completion and Persistence

Based on the third follow up of the High School and Beyond Study (1986), described above, Porter (1990) reported on the undergraduate completion/graduation rates across different ethnic groups for those students who attended a four-year baccalaureate-granting institution at some point between 1980 and 1986. The actual number of students in the sample includes Hispanic (N=897), Asian American (N=265), Black (N=1,308), and White (N=2,859). Asian Americans (41.5%) and European Americans (43.9%) were more likely to have graduated or completed college within six year after high school than Hispanics (20.4%) and Blacks (23.9%). Also, Asian Americans were least likely to leave in the critical first semester or year of college, especially those attending public institutions. Less than 10% dropped out in the first year of college compared to almost 25% of Blacks, approximately 27% of Hispanics, and approximately 20% of Whites.

In 1996 through 2001 The National Center for Education Statistics conducted the Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study (BPS: 96/01). The information that was collected by BPS includes information on persistence, progress, and attainment from initial time of entry into postsecondary education through leaving and entering the workforce. The sample of the study includes traditional and nontraditional older students and is representative of all beginning students in postsecondary education. The students were followed up for at least 5 years at approximately 2-year intervals. Based on this data, Snyder, Tan, and Hoffman (2004) reported that fifty eight percent of the adult population who enrolled in a 4-year college in 1995-1996 had completed a bachelor’s degree by 2001. Asian Americans had the highest rates of completion at 69.1%, followed by Whites at 61.9%, American Indians at 52.7%, Hispanics at 44%, and Blacks at 43.4%.

Thomson (1998) also reported the following graduation rates of entering students in 1983 through 1992 at University of California: 90.6% of Asian entering freshman completed their undergraduate degree within six years or less compared to 72.2% of African Americans, 78.1% of Hispanics, and 78.6% of American Indians. Among the Asian Americans, the highest completion rates were among Pacific Islanders (92.9%) and Chinese (92.8%), followed by Japanese American (92.6%), East Indian/Pakistani (89.5%), Korean American (87.6%), Filipino American (87.4%), and Other Asian (86.8%). On the other hand, the study by Toupin and Son (1991) of all Asian American students who attended a private, highly selective, private university in the Northeast found they were less likely to graduate than were their matched non-Asian counterparts. One explanation for the lower completion rates reported in the latter study may be that a greater proportion of Asian Americans attending private universities in the Northeast are more likely to leave college than those in public universities on the West Coast. Indeed, Porter (1991) reported that the greatest proportion of students who remain on track in their education are Asian Americans at public universities (89%), and that a much larger proportion of Asian Americans attend public universities on the West coast than in other areas of the country.

Jose, P., & Huntsinger, C. (2005). Moderation and mediation effects of coping by Chinese American and European American adolescents. Journal of Genetic Psychology, 166(1), 16-43.
Porter, O. F. (1990). Undergraduate Completion and Persistence at Four Year Colleges and Universities Detailed Findings. Washington, D.C.: The National Institute of Independent Colleges and Universities (NIICU).
Snyder, T.D., Tan, A.G., & Hoffman, C.M. (2004). Digest of education statistics 2003,

(NCES 2005-025). U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. Washington, DC: Government Printing Office.

Tan, D. L. (1994). Uniqueness of the Asian-American Experience in Higher Education, College Student Journal, 28, 412-421.
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Freshman Entering 1983-1992 by Ethnicity. Berkeley: University of California, Office of Student Research.

Zhang, Y. (2003). Immigrant generational differences in academic achievement and its growth: The case of Asian American high school students. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Chicago, Illinios, April 21-25, 2003).

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