Research Proposal and Annotated Bibliography

My research topic pertains to the experience of young children when it comes to immigrating to a new country. Whether their journey be with a family member or by themselves I want to shed light upon the psychological effects that these children undergo in the midst of great stress. I want to specifically investigate the trek from Mexico to America because it is such a dangerous journey and at young ages is when children learn to process and assimilate into the world. The negative events that happen in our childhood influence how we will perceive the future, the goals we set for ourselves, and how we live our lives and treat others. Most legal residents in America have never experienced the  abusive and laborious journey of immigrating from Mexico to America. Most times young children as well as adults are susceptible to rape, murder, and theft from smugglers and are imprisoned by ICE . Most Latino undocumented immigrants are left to figure out where they belong when they cannot stay in their home country and they cannot immigrate to the land of opportunities. The personal accounts and effects that great stress have on immigrated youth is essential to address for our society, they are the future generation. I think when child immigration has the ability to influence the way our society interacts with community it is time we focus on the issue of mental health among immigrants. There must be a reason that so many children endure the trek across  the border, what does such instability offer youth and their families. I want to investigate how so many children endure the grueling process of immigration and how that contributes to other social factors such as socioeconomic status, acceptance, racism, mental health. I also want to explore in depth if it is fair to conclude that children who migrate from Mexico to America across the border are more mature than youth who have not experienced the same journey. How does the immigration process affect civil engagement and the motivation to be apart and aware of communal surroundings.


Annotated Bibliography

Seid, Michael  Crossing the Border for Health Care: Access and Primary Care Characteristics for Young Children of Latino Farm Workers Along the US-Mexico Border. San Diego: Elsevier Science, 2003 print

This annotation of the source above goes into depth about the division of health care options on the Mexican American border. It examines what percentage of Latino farmers have access to healthcare in America or Mexico and what qualifies them to receive health care in these countries. This printed text documents statistical information of a study taken of immigrants living in San Diego to determine where they received primary care.

Out of all the participants it was found that half of the people go back to Mexico for healthcare. It was documented that factors such as cost, language accessibility, and how effective the care was. Again half of these immigrants attested to having uninsured health care for their children were sought after in Mexico.

I am thinking I could probably examine as a source to figure out why these parents would make the journey with their children back to Mexico to receive care even when the immigration process was so brutal. I hope to be able to gain evidence to explain how accessibility and language barriers can force parents to make choices on behalf of their children that can have a negative impact on mental health.


Oppedal, Brit. Roysamb,Epsen.  The effect of acculturation and social support on change in mental health among young immigrants. Norway: Web of Science, 2010 computer text.

The article I have listed goes into depth about how community and emotional/social support affects mental health among immigrant youth. It was a study that used a questionnaire to gain insight about how acculturation might help the self esteem of young immigrants. The socialization process warned participants that the assimilation into American culture meant to improve mental health might cause issues with ethnic identity.

There was also external factors that affected the improvement of mental health such as discrimination and how that affects the way youth feel about their social identity I am hoping to use this source to describe and prove that not only the stress of migration but that cultural assimilation can greatly impact the way immigrant children react to social situations


Lusing, Stuart. Review of Child and Adolescent Refugee Mental Health, Boston: Elsevier Science, 2004 print.

This article does in depth research on the psychological health among refugees. This describes the process of seeking refuge from persecution in the home country, and the inability to feel safe and protected. The article describes how half of the world’s 20 million refugees are children. The process of children uprooting from their life into immediate resettlement can cause trauma for youth trying to process the necessity of a new cultural assimilation. Developmental theory exist within a cultural and social identity. When the uprooting process so does the security of having a clear social role and ability of assimilating easily. I am hoping to explore how this pertains to all immigrants and the ability to cope with such abruptness and uncertainty.


Georgiades, Katholiki. Contextual Influences on Children’s Mental Health and School Performance: The Moderating Effects of Family Immigrant Status, John Wiley and Sons: 2007, print.

Georgiades examines how immigration has a direct relationship to a child immigrants social and educational development. Research shown in this study compares the behavior of immigrant children and non immigrant children and how immigrant children to have more behavioral issues.Immigrant children exhibit higher chances of substance abuse, domestic violence, and imprisonment. I want to examine how these influences will affect the rest of a child immigrants life.

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