Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Jeria, Jorge

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Counseling, Adult and Higher Education


Higher education; Adult education; Multicultural education


The central purpose of this qualitative study was to examine, from the transnational and cultural capital perspectives, transition, integration, and success in higher education through the lived experiences of first generation, foreign-born immigrant students legally residing in the U.S. Transnationality and cultural capital theories have been determined as being important for seeking responses to the raised research questions of this study. A transnationality theory allowed me to deeply understand the participants' migration experiences and their influences on the students' educational practices, while acquisition of cultural capital in this study focused on exploring factors such as family background, cultural values and expectations, background education and social class investment that influence academic success. Although this study focused on both genders, it paid specific attention to the female participants' voices in the analysis. In-depth, 55- to 120-minute semi-structured interviews with a brief demographic survey at the beginning of each interview were the major source of data for this study. Additionally, interview field notes and post-interview reflective notes in accordance with the research purpose were employed to ensure triangulation of the data. The findings of the study support researchers and expand awareness of higher educational professionals and policy makers regarding the unique transnational experiences and needs of first generation, foreign-born immigrant students, including women, in their transition and success in the U.S. higher education system.


Advisors: Jorge Jeria.||Committee members: LaVerne Gyant; Laura Johnson.||Includes bibliographical references.


199 pages




Northern Illinois University

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