Immigrants Learning English in a Time of Anti-Immigrant Sentiment
Posted by Jennifer Vecchiarelli on June 14, 2019 in categoryFacts & ResearchcategoryAdvocacy

Check out this week’s article from our new biennial research journal, Adult Literacy Education: The International Journal of Literacy, Language, and Numeracy. The peer-reviewed online journal informs practitioners in the field, policy makers, and funders about best practices in adult literacy, numeracy, and English language. Every issue will cover a wide range of research and information as well as other interesting content (e.g., resource reviews, opinion pieces, and debates and discussions on timely topics of interest to the field).

The free journal is available as one downloadable document or as individual articles. We hope you will share the timely and relevant content of the journal with your peers and across your networks. 

This week’s featured excerpt is from Immigrants Learning English in a Time of Anti-Immigrant Sentiment, by Clarena Larrotta. Here is a short preview of the article. You can read and download the full article here.

Immigrants bring a wide variety of skills that favor the market productivity and add to the economic life of the country. They contribute to the development of the U.S. economy through the skills they bring to the market (cognitive skills such as abstract thinking, non-cognitive skills such as motivation and initiative, and specific skills such as the ability to operate machinery) and through the small business they own. Lancee and Bol (2017, p. 696) assert that different types of skills are relevant on the labor market: cognitive skills, non-cognitive skills, and specific skills. Likewise, Costa, Cooper, and Shierholz (2014) explain that: Immigrants have an outsized role in U.S. economic output because they are disproportionately likely to be working and are concentrated among prime working ages. Indeed, despite being 13 percent of the population, immigrants comprise 16 percent of the labor force…the share of immigrant workers who own small businesses is slightly higher than the comparable share among U.S.-born workers. Immigrants comprise 18 percent of small business owners.

Despite being a significant force in the development of the economy and the contribution they make to the demographic diversification and cultural growth of the country, immigrants are currently not welcome in the United States. In fact, in 2016, the United States resettled 97,000 refugees; however, this number dramatically decreased in 2017 when it resettled only 33,000 refugees (Pew Research Center, 2018). This decrease in numbers is the product of new immigration policies aiming to further restrict who enters the country.


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