Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



Program Name/Specialization

Developmental Psychology


Faculty of Science

First Advisor

Dr. Alexandra Gottardo

Advisor Role



By comparing the academic success and internal processes of immigrant groups, this study aimed to explore the impact of immigration status (first, second, and third-generation) and cultural backgrounds on academic achievement on a holistic level. By measuring acculturation, parental expectations, self-efficacy, goal adjustment, motivation, control beliefs, and vocabulary knowledge of university students, the combination of constructs best correlated to academic achievement was studied with determinants of demographics playing a key role. In addition to quantitative analyses, in-depth interviews supplemented the analyses and further gave insight to the backgrounds of the target population, second-generation immigrant students. The results indicated that there were no significant differences between immigrant groups although it was shown than third-generation immigrants achieve slightly higher academically than first and second-generation immigrant students. Second-generation immigrants demonstrated higher levels of acculturation and parental expectations than first-generation immigrants, but lower levels than third-generation immigrants. Bicultural identity and retaining some cultural norms through selective acculturation were prevalent factors amongst second-generation immigrants with emerging themes that represented the constructs measured and were consistent with the results of the quantitative analyses. It was found that each immigrant group performed uniquely in constructs that have been researched to affect academic achievement.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season