Choice of Fields of Study of Asian American Youth in the U.S.: Ethnic and Gender Differences

Yingyi Ma, Johns Hopkins University

This study examines the ethnic and gender differences in terms of the choice of fields of study of Asian American youth, paying attention to their generational status. The classification of fields of study will employ horizontal dimension in terms of hard/soft, and hierarchical dimension in terms of earnings power. With data from 1988-1994 National Educational Longitudinal Survey, I expect to find: 1) Asian American youth, men and women alike, tend to gravitate toward hard lucrative fields, as compared to their white counterparts. 2) Filipino and Japanese are more likely to choose soft fields than other Asian groups. 3) Asian women are more likely to choose hard fields than white women, but still less likely than Asian men. 4) First generation Asian immigrants are more likely to choose hard and lucrative fields than their native-born counterparts.

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Presented in Session 92: Educational Differences among Immigrants in the United States