Back to Top
Major Projects

Transition from Secondary to Post-Secondary Education: Access, Obstacles, and Success Factors of Immigrant, Minority and Low Income Youth in Hong Kong

  • Project Leader
  • Dr YUEN, Yuet Mui Celeste (Department of Education Policy and Leadership) 
  • Description
  • This proposed study will investigate the obstacles and success factors influencing the enrolment of immigrant, minority and low-income youth in post-secondary education (PSE) in Hong Kong, with reference to educational access, equity and outcomes. 
  • Scheme
  • General Research Fund 
  • Year
  • 2017/2018 

This proposed study will investigate the obstacles and success factors influencing the enrolment of immigrant, minority and low-income youth in post-secondary education (PSE) in Hong Kong, with reference to educational access, equity and outcomes. Immigrant and ethnic minority populations are among the fastest growing groups around the world and often overlap with the low income class. It remains a significant challenge for each of these categories to gain access to PSE and to be successful. The under-representation of South Asian and mainland Chinese immigrant youth in PSE has raised serious concerns about education access and equity. Many young people in that low-income category say they lack both the confidence to be accepted and the financial means to realise their aspirations. The barriers outlined above are likely to affect the different groups in different ways, and knowing the underlying reasons behind this phenomenon both overall and for each group will help narrow unacceptable disparities in access to education. The proposed study will employ a mixed-method approach to provide the empirical data necessary to shed new light on the complexities of educational decision making for PSE pathways among the young people in these sectors. Cross-sectional survey data will be collected using the modified Factors Influencing Pursuit of Higher Education Questionnaire (Harris & Halpin, 1999; 2002), while qualitative data will be generated through multiple case studies (Yin, 2014) and three rounds of longitudinal tracking and in-depth interviews. The multiple data sets will offer a holistic understanding of the educational pathways and choices of some of the most disadvantaged student groups in an Asian context. The objectives are: (1) to analyse the patterns of the academic and career pathways of immigrant, minority and low-income youth by tracking their graduation from secondary education; (2) to compare the types of PS institutions in which these groups first enrolled with those selected by their more socially advantaged counterparts; (3) to identify the obstacles and success factors of immigrant, minority and low-income youth in the transition from secondary to PSE in Hong Kong; (4) to provide evidence-based recommendations for promoting social equitable policy and enhancing successful PSE preparation programmes for all students; (5) to generate a data-set to understand the strategies in creating human capabilities and economic returns for immigrant, minority and low-income youth in Hong Kong; (6) to advance theory in understanding the complexities of what is a common issue worldwide by engaging in discourse with international scholars.

< Back