One of the main reasons for people to immigrate to the United States is to find out the possibilities to earn a living and create a better future. However, it is not always easy and safe to be an immigrant in this country. According to the American Immigration Council (“Immigrants in the United States”), about 44.7 million immigrants live in the United States, which comprises 14% of the total population (1). Despite the intentions of the US government to create favorable conditions for immigrants and offer appropriate working places, a number of challenges and concerns exist and provoke new debates. More than 11 million illegal and undocumented immigrants have to cross the national boundaries, putting their lives and the US economy under threat (Garcini et al. 246). As soon as the fact of illegal immigration has been proved, the US native population took different positions, either supporting this idea or disproving its worth in the country. In this research proposal, the topic of immigration in the United States will be discussed from the point of view of its positive and negative impact on the population, the country’s economy, and politics.
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Many studies about immigration and its progress in the United States have already been developed, but people are not able to create one similar position and prove its appropriateness. American identity remains under threat because of immigration and the importance of identifying such ascriptive characteristics as skin color, language, birthplace, and legal status (Jones-Correa 48). Regarding my personal opinion, immigration has to be a personal and national concept at the same time. It is hard for people or even professional organizations to predict its consequences, but it is necessary to create special policies and develop points of view. This research project is interesting to me because it is my opportunity to investigate and analyze the current immigration situation in the country. It is the responsibility of every American citizen to know how immigration shapes society, and I hope to gain new knowledge and attitudes from this project. It is not just another work that could show the progress of my writing and researching skills. It is a project where I combine my critical thinking and judgments with other studies and the findings of other authors.
The benefits of this research are numerous in terms of the current immigration affairs in the country, the steps taken by the government to control immigrants, and the social position. In addition to the evaluation of the legal policies and regulations that determine the process of immigration in the United States, an uninformed audience gets a chance to identify the causes and outcomes of illegal immigration, the benefits of immigrants in American society, and the conditions under which deportation is inevitable. There are such professional agencies as the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the American Immigration Council, and the Center for Immigration Studies that are responsible for studying and controlling immigrants in the country. Their duties and contributions vary, and this project will help to combine them around the idea of immigration legalization and management.
Research Question and Hypothesis
The topic of immigration in the United States is broad, and to develop a strong research project, it is necessary to narrow down the scope and identify the major purposes. I am interested in several aspects of this process and want to understand what issues play a crucial role in human relationships if they are influenced by immigration. At the same time, my research has to include a legal side as the US government continues strengthening its interventions for immigrants. Therefore, the leading research question to pursue this research project can be built. Are the current regulations enough to control the impact of illegal immigration in the United States and meet the needs of the native and non-resident populations?
At this moment, my working hypothesis is that the current regulations are not enough to control illegal immigration in the United States. To answer the offered question and to prove the appropriateness of the hypothesis, a brief plan of work must be developed:
- The concept of immigration is discussed from the social, economic, and political perspectives.
- Visa and deportation are the concepts that determine the duration of immigrants’ stay in the country, and their conditions are explained.
- The needs and expectations of people from immigration vary and have to be analyzed thoroughly.
- Illegal immigration remains a problem in US society, and its regulations determine research.
- The analysis of the current immigration policies and organizations shows if immigration is properly managed.
Goals and Questions
The analysis of the immigration situation in the United States is a complex process and requires much attention. In this research project, there are several stages that have to be taken within the frames of a research strategy. The goal of this exploratory research is to unite political, social, and individual factors in the analysis of immigration policies. The important questions to be answered are:
- What is immigration? And what is the current immigration situation in the United States?
- How do people get visas and solve their departure problems?
- What are the main immigration agencies and their policies in the country?
- What do people expect from immigration, either legal or illegal?
- What are the economic and social outcomes of immigration policies?
Concepts and Definitions
To find enough credible sources, it is essential to identify several key terms and put them into a search engine. In this project, these keywords are “immigration,” “illegal and legal,” “visa,” “deportation,” “USCIS,” and “DACA”. There is no need to add such words as “human needs,” “economy,” and “politics” because many studies contain the description of these factors. The basis of this research project should also involve the discussion of the impact of the USCIS as a part of the Department of Homeland Security that aims at managing the immigration system. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is a working immigration policy that allows the unlawful presence of immigrants. There are also basic immigration concepts to be defined and used in the discussion and analysis:
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- An immigrant is a foreigner who comes to and permanently stays in the United States.
- A nonimmigrant is a foreigner who comes to the United States with a purpose for a certain period of time.
- A native citizen is a person who is born in the United States and uses citizenship as a birthright.
Illegal immigration is an “infringement on the rights of the lawful citizens of a country where such inflow takes place” (Kar and Beladi 699).
Illegal labor migration is a process when foreign nationals enter a country for working purposes without a labor permit (Hjarnø 3).
It is planned to address the Internet to find out recent statistical data, either nationally in the United States or globally. For example, the book by Hjarnø introduces the details about the controversy of illegal labor immigration in several European countries (1). Mohl focuses on the promotion of the concepts of nativism and xenophobia in Alabama as a political strategy (56). It is also planned to address the official reports of the American Immigration Council and similar agencies to find out the recent achievements and regulations. The American Immigration Council (“The Dream Act, DACA, and Other Policies”) explains the worth of the Dream Act and the DACA for American citizens and foreigners. Finally, the articles from legal and administrative journals help to build a common opinion on the topic. Such goals and values as crime control, working conditions, and taxes cannot be ignored at the expense of immigration policies (Frost 110). Therefore, it is not enough to visit a library and make some notes. This research is based on a combination of official statistics, personal explanations, and external findings.
In general, this research proposal aims at identifying the main steps in writing an exploratory paper about the main characteristics of immigration in the United States. Defining the scope of the work, it is important to focus on the research questions and hypothesis and prove that the current policies are not enough to support immigrants and consider the demands of native citizens in the country. As soon as the analysis is introduced, it will become clear what holes prevent the development of trustful relationships between American employers, the US population, and immigrants who come to the country.
American Immigration Council. “The Dream Act, DACA, and Other Policies Designed to Protect Dreamers.” AIC, 2019, Web.
American Immigration Council. “Immigrants in the United States.” AIC, 2020, Web.
Frost, Amanda. “Can the Government Deport Immigrants Using Information It Encouraged Them to Provide.” Administrative Law Review Accord, vol. 2, no. 2, 2016, pp. 97-110.
Garcini, Luz M., et al. ““A High Price Paid”: Migration-Related Loss and Distress Among Undocumented Mexican Immigrants.” Journal of Latinx Psychology, vol. 7, no. 3, 2019, pp. 245-249.
Hjarnø, Jan. Illegal Immigrants and Developments in Employment in the Labour Markets of the EU. Routledge, 2019.
Jones-Correa, Michael, et al. “Immigrant Perceptions of US-Born Receptivity and the Shaping of American Identity.” The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences, vol. 4, no. 5, 2018, pp. 47-80.
Kar, Saibal, and Hamid Beladi. “A Model of Smuggling and Trafficking of Illegal Immigrants with a Host Country Policy.” Review of Development Economics, vol. 21, no. 3, 2017, pp. 698-712.
Mohl, Raymond. “The Politics of Expulsion: A Short History of Alabama’s Anti-Immigrant Law, HB 56.” Journal of American Ethnic History, vol. 35, no. 3, 2016, pp. 42-67.