Date of Graduation

Spring 5-19-2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Migration Studies


College of Arts and Sciences


Migration Studies

First Advisor

Patrick Camangian


Students of migrant-origin currently represent approximately 25% of the total student population in the United States. As immigration to the U.S. continues, the proportion of migrant-origin students in public schools is only expected to grow. Despite the growing representation of migrant-origin youth amongst the K-12 student population, current schooling approaches have not expanded to address the diversifying needs of the student population. Because public school systems are struggling to adapt to the needs of migrant-origin students, these students’ educational attainment is suffering. The presence of implicit bias, microaggressions, and stereotypes in all aspects of schooling is a significant factor that impedes the educational attainment of migrant-origin students. When students feel as though their cultural ways of being are attacked by their teachers or peers, the subsequent release of cortisol actually prevents students from being able to intake and process new learning material for a significant period of time.

Culturally responsive and sustaining pedagogies offer educators frameworks that can actively reduce the negative effects outlined above. In order to reduce the negative impacts that implicit bias, microaggressions, and stereotypes have on migrant-origin students, it is critical that educational practitioners develop the skills to identify and unlearn their own harmful ideologies that manifest in the classroom. Culturally sustaining and responsive pedagogies’ emphasis on self-reflection is key to developing these skills, as educators must deeply learn themselves and their own relationships with culture before attempting to learn their students.