Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type



Counseling and Human Services


College of Behavioral and Social Sciences

Primary Advisor

Dr. Lisa Clifton


Immigration policy in the U.S. is a confusing and inadequate system, the shortcomings of which directly impact the lives of millions of individuals, children, families, and communities. Its primary inadequacies include an overall lack of clearly defined policies and procedures, confusion among immigration authorities and child welfare practitioners regarding proper procedures, and non-compliance with procedural standards by immigration authorities. Those shortcomings have largely resulted in many immigrant families being separated from each other, immigrant children experiencing trauma, and a widespread disregard for unauthorized immigrants’ both constitutional and human rights. The literature reviewed describes relevant immigration policies and their issues. The study conducted surveyed college students to determine their understanding of immigration issues, of which the results demonstrated varied beliefs and understandings; many students responded neutrally or that they did not know the answer.