Immigration in Education

In collaboration with The Smithsonian National Musuem of American History, the Center for Global Migration Studies at the University of Maryland is conducting research in the field of education and history with the goal of assessing the state of the field regarding the teaching and learning of immigration and migration history in schools across the United States (primarily focusing on k-12 settings). The data and analysis generated by the research will serve as the basis for the creation of a new framework for teaching migration/immigration across the country.

According to the Migration Policy Institute, in 2009, there were about 16.9 million children age 17 and under with at least one immigrant parent. They accounted for 23.8 percent of the 70.9 million children age 17 and under in the United States. The study of Immigration and Migration can provide a rich civic learning environment for all students, yet our preliminary research shows that the teaching of this subject is fragmented and contemporary stories of immigration and migration are not given equal historical weight with those of the past.

The collaborative research seeks to understand the current state of the field and to suggest new ways of understanding migration and immigration as explored in the Our American Journey initiative and by the Center for Global Migration Studies. Our American Journey (OAJ): the Smithsonian's Immigration/Migration Initiative has a history of collaboration with the Center. The Center also formally partnered with OAJ for the Migrant Metropolis Conference in March of 2014. A third conference day was held at the National Museum of American History and focused on public history around migration. In addition to these formal partnerships, OAJ has engaged scholars from the Center for conceptual and intellectual framework feedback at a series of consultant and scholar meetings since OAJ's first successful grant proposal in 2009. Research in the area of education and history is a new collaboration between both entities; it will encourage new collaborative teams across departments, schools, and museums thus allowing for cross institutional developments. Because of the existing collaboration between the Our American Journey and the Center for Global Migration Studies, this project will enhance and strengthen the shared goals of both projects.

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