Native Student Attitudes towards Equal Rights for Immigrants: A Study in 18 European Countries

Maria Magdalena Isac, Ralf Maslowski, Greetje van der Werf

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The present study investigates the determinants of native student attitudes
towards equal rights for immigrants giving particular attention to the effect
of immigrant share in the classroom and the extent to which it can be
generalized across country contexts. The contribution sheds some new light
on the validity of the contact hypothesis, which suggests that mixing native
and immigrant students in schools and classrooms can contribute to higher
levels of support for immigrants’ rights. The analyses were conducted
across 18 countries participating to the ICCS survey in 2009. For the
analyses we applied a three-level multilevel model controlling for individual,
classroom, and country characteristics. We tested a random slope for
immigrant share in the classroom at country level, and we modeled both
linear and quadratic effects of immigrant share. The overall pattern
suggests that in most countries there is a small positive effect of immigrant
share, which does not change dramatically in direction or size at higher
immigrant share levels.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-26
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Social Science Education
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Attitudes towards equal rights for immigrants, immigrant share in the
  • citizenship education

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