Does Ethnicity Matter in Intentions to Study Abroad: Analysis of High School Students in Estonia
Enel Pungas, Kadri Täht, Anu Realo and Tiit Tammaru
Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, DOI:10.1080/1369183X.2015.1059739
Abstract: This paper examines factors that shape intentions to study abroad. Previous research highlights the importance of various forms of capital—human, economic, social, cultural, and mobility capital—as well as personality traits in the formation of the intention to complete education in foreign countries. Our specific focus is on ethnic differences in going to study abroad. The data comes from a representative survey of high school graduates in Estonia. We apply multilevel binary regression in order to capture both individual and school effects in the formation of study intentions. Our key findings reveal, first, that there exist significant ethnic differences in the willingness to continue studies abroad despite controlling for individual characteristics, including various forms of capital and personality traits. Second, ethnic differences disappear once we control for the study language of the school. The institutional context thus plays an important role in the formation of ethnic differences in educational aspirations.