Canadian Study Finds Lower Dropout Rates for Immigrants and Minority Students

November 11, 2010

A Canadian study concludes that immigrant students and what it calls "visible minorities" are less likely than are other students to drop out in their first or second year of college -- a finding that the researchers attribute to the fact that many white students in Canada are in college because of parental pressure. The study, by the Measuring the Effectiveness of Student Aid (MESA) Project, finds that among low-income students at Canada's colleges, 17.1 percent of "visible minority immigrants" drop out in the first or second year, compared to 25.5 percent for other students. At the country's universities, the dropout rates are 3.8 percent for immigrant minority students, and 9.6 percent for others. "Parental expectations for completing PSE are much greater for these students, and this could be driving the low dropout rates we observe," says the lead author, Ross Finnie of the University of Ottawa.

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