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Social support, stress, and adaptation
The proposed research is designed to address two major deficits in knowledge regarding the
adaptation of immigrant students to the U.S. school environment, including a lack of information about the
impact of immigration on students at different age levels and the absence of longitudinal data regarding
post-migration adjustment. The focus of the study is on the emotional, behavioral, and academic
adaptation of immigrant children and adolescents, in relation to their level of post-migration stress and the
support provided by their social networks. Participants will be 600 newly immigrant elementary, middle,
and high school students. Participating students will be interviewed shortly after school entry, with a
second assessment two years later. Higher levels of stress and lower levels of social support following
migration are expected to be associated with poorer adaptation. The proposed research will provide a
much-needed window on the initial adaptation of immigrant children and adolescents.
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