Parents and Children Talk: The Family Dynamics of English Language Proficiency

58 Pages Posted: 30 Jul 2004

See all articles by Barry R. Chiswick

Barry R. Chiswick

University of Illinois at Chicago; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Yew L. Lee

University of Western Australia

Paul W. Miller

Curtin University of Technology - School of Economics and Finance; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Curtin University - Centre for Research in Applied Economics

Date Written: July 2004

Abstract

This paper extends the analysis of the acquisition of destination language proficiency among immigrants by explicitly incorporating dynamics among family members - mother, father and children. Single equation, bivariate, and four-state (multivariate) probit analyses are employed. Immigrant English language skills are greater the younger the age at migration, the longer the duration of residence, the higher the level of education, and for immigrants not from Asia. Large positive correlations in the unmeasured determinants of proficiency exist between spouses, between siblings, and between parents and children, although the latter relationship is stronger for the mother.

Keywords: immigrants, language, family, multinominal probit

JEL Classification: J15, J16, J24, J61

Suggested Citation

Chiswick, Barry R. and Lee, Yew Liang and Miller, Paul W., Parents and Children Talk: The Family Dynamics of English Language Proficiency (July 2004). IZA Discussion Paper No. 1216. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=571051

Barry R. Chiswick (Contact Author)

University of Illinois at Chicago ( email )

601 S. Morgan Street, Room 2103UH
Chicago, IL 60607-7121
United States
312-996-2683 (Phone)
312-996-3344 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Yew Liang Lee

University of Western Australia ( email )

35 Stirling Highway
Crawley, Western Australia 6009
AUSTRALIA

Paul W. Miller

Curtin University of Technology - School of Economics and Finance ( email )

GPO Box U1987
Perth WA 6845
Australia

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Curtin University - Centre for Research in Applied Economics ( email )

GPO Box U1987
Perth, Western Australia 6845
Australia

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