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ERIC Number: EJ1210096
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2019
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0143-4632
Language as a Bridge to Higher Education: A Large-Scale Empirical Study of Heritage Language Proficiency on Language Minority Students' Academic Success
Jang, Eunjee; Brutt-Griffler, Janina
Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, v40 n4 p322-337 2019
In a nation where monolingualism predominates, heritage language (HL) has been downplayed as less important in educational contexts in the U.S. Disproportionately little attention has been given to the role of HL in language minority (LM) students' attendance to postsecondary education (PSE) (cf. Brutt-Griffler, Janina, and Manka Varghese, eds. 2004. Bilingualism and Language Pedagogy. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters Press). To address this void, this study investigates whether LM high school students' HL proficiency and use have influence on high school completion and college attendance. To further identify whether these relationships differ by cross-linguistic similarities between HL and English, comparisons are made between Asian and Latinx LM students. We analyse a nationally representative large-scale longitudinal dataset (NELS) using the programming language R. The results from logistic regressions underscore the distinctive role of HL on LM students' high school completion and differentiated effects of HL on PSE pathways. Among our findings, we show that for Latinx students, HL literacy proficiency was a positive predictor of their four-year college attendance; whereas, for Asian students, HL use at home was a positive predictor. The positive effects were observed after controlling for their individual and family background. The study supports the argument that continued use of HL and HL literacy hold the key to enhancing academic attainment.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988 (NCES)