refugee student cultural background profiles

Learn about your students and their cultural backgrounds with cultural background resources from USAHello.

By being culturally informed, you’ll be better equipped for teaching diverse students in your multicultural classroom. Read and download our cultural background resources. You can also download all of the resources as one PDF. The information is concise so you can quickly learn key information to help you help your students. These cultural background resources were designed for educators but can be used by anyone who wants to welcome newcomers in their community.

In This Section


Students from Afghanistan are very focused on their families Read more


Algerian students will have parents who want to support their education Read more

Bhutan (Nepali origin)

Refugee students from Bhutan may have gone to school in Nepal Read more


Students from Burma tend to highly respect teachers but most have interrupted educations Read more


Students from Burundi tend to be more circular learners Read more


Students from Cambodia are likely second generation students Read more


Chinese students are likely to be respectful and formal with their teachers. Read more


Colombia has a strong education system. However, students from Colombia may have fled violence and not have attended school. Read more


Cuban families strongly believe in the value of educaiton Read more

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Many students from the DRC spent long years in refugee camps Read more

El Salvador

Students from El Salvador tend to live in multi-generation families Read more


Many Eritreans were resettled to the United States in the early 2000s Read more


Ethiopian students likely had limited resources in their schools Read more


Many Guatemalan families in the United States are from the Mayan culture and may not speak Spanish Read more


Many students from Haiti came to the United States after the earthquake Read more


Students from Honduras have varying degrees of education and may have experienced violence Read more


Students from Iran likely attended schools but may not have been encouraged to think critically Read more


Iraqi students are probably schooled and may have highly educated parents Read more

Karen (Burma)

Karen students highly respect teachers. Many did not have access to formal education Read more


Karenni students highly respect teachers. Many did not have access to formal education Read more


Most students from Laos are second generation immigrants Read more


Liberians have a lot of familiarity and experience with American culture Read more

Mon (Burma)

Mon students highly respect teachers but many did not have access to formal education Read more


Refugee students from Nepal likely had limited educational opportunities Read more


Most Nicaraguan students have families who want to be involved in their education Read more


Girls are less likely to have attended school and parents will need to be encouraged to attend school events Read more

Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is a part of the United States but students have very different opportunities Read more

Rakhine State (Burma)

Students from Rakhine State tend to be very culturally different than students from the rest of Burma Read more


Students from Rohingya state may have had no formal education opportunities Read more

Russia (Former Soviet Union)

Students from Russia tend to be indirect communicatiors Read more

Shan (Burma)

Shan students greatly respect their teachers Read more

Sierra Leone

Students from Sierra Leone will enjoy cultural classroom activities Read more


May students from Somalia have little or no formal education Read more

South Sudan

Students from South Sudan have probably experienced high levels of violence Read more


Syrian students may have interrupted educations but highly educated parents Read more


Vietnamese students come from a highly authoritarian educational background Read more


Students from former Yugoslavia highly value education and respect their teachers Read more

Refugees shaking hands

Ensure that all of your students succeed

Evidence-based classroom strategies and support for educators of newcomer students.

Enroll today