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Immigrants' education and required job skills

By Diane Galarneau and René Morissette

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Between 1991 and 2006, the proportion of male immigrants with a university degree in jobs with low educational requirements such as clerks, truck drivers, cashiers and taxi drivers increased from 12% to 21% for established immigrants, while the proportion remained stable at about 10% for native-born men.

From 1991 to 2006, the proportion of established female immigrants with a degree in jobs with low educational requirements increased more modestly from 24% to 29%, while remaining stable at around 12% for native-born women.

For recent immigrants, the proportion of university graduates in low-skill jobs increased between 1991 and 2006, but it remained within the levels measured for the period. These proportions were nearly 25% for men and a little under 40% for women.

In 1991, established immigrant men with a degree in a field of study leading to a regulated profession such as medicine, nursing, engineering, law and accounting had low-skill job rates comparable to those of native-born Canadian men. By 2006, these rates had increased sharply for both men and women, particularly for those trained in medicine and engineering.