nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2006‒02‒05
twenty-one papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
Universidade da Beira Interior

  1. Immigrant source country educational quality and Canadian labour market outcomes By Sweetman, Arthur
  2. Family background and access to post-secondary education: what happened over the 1990s? By Finnie, Ross; Laporte, Christine; Lascelles, Eric
  3. Who Goes? The direct and indirect effects of family background on access to post-secondary education By Finnie, Ross; Lascelles, Eric; Sweetman, Arthur
  4. Regional Concentration of Highly Educated Couples By Signe Jauhiainen
  5. Relative wage patterns among the highly educated in a knowledge-based economy By Picot, Garnett; Morissette, René; Ostrovsky, Yuri
  6. Participation in post-secondary education in Canada: Has the role of parental income and education changed over the 1990s? By Drolet, Marie
  7. Earnings of couples with high and low levels of education, 1980-2000 By Morissette, René; Johnson, Anick
  8. Canadian compulsory school laws and their impact on educational attainment and future earnings By Oreopoulos, Phil
  10. The Risk-Return Trade-Off in Human Capital Investment By Charlotte Christiansen; Juanna Schröter Joensen
  11. Rates of Return to Degrees across British Regions By Nigel C. O'Leary; Peter J. Sloane
  12. Post Brown vs. the Board of Education: the effects of the end of court-ordered desegregation By Byron F. Lutz
  13. IMPROVING TRAINING AND EDUCATION IN CLUSTERS - LESSONS FROM THREE PORT CLUSTERS Improving Training and Education in Clusters - Lessons from Three Port Clusters By Peter W. De Langen
  14. Differences in the Distribution of High School Achievement: The Role of Class Size and Time-in-term By Corak, Miles; Lauzon, Darren
  15. Making the transition: the impact of moving from elementary to secondary school on adolescents' academic achievement and psychological adjustment By Lipps, Garth
  16. Are the Factors Affecting Dropout Behavior Related to Initial Enrollment Intensity for College Undergraduates? By Leslie S. Stratton; Dennis M. O’Toole; James N. Wetzel
  17. The importance of signalling in job placement and promotion By Heisz, Andrew; Oreopoulos, Philip
  18. Human capital and regional economic growth - Evidence from the dual approach By Enrique López-Bazo; Rosina Moreno
  21. A CGE assessment of a university's effects on a regional economy - supply-side versus demand-side effects By James Giesecke; John Madden

  1. By: Sweetman, Arthur
    Abstract: This article analyses the relationship between the quality of education that immigrants received in their home country, as measured by international test scores, and their success in the Canadian labour market.
    Keywords: Education, Labour, Educational attainment, Labour force participation
    Date: 2004–12–15
  2. By: Finnie, Ross; Laporte, Christine; Lascelles, Eric
    Abstract: This paper presents new evidence on the relationships between access to postsecondary education and family background. It uses the School Leavers Survey (SLS) and the Youth in Transition Survey (YITS) to analyse participation rates in 1991 and 2000.
    Keywords: Social conditions, Education, Families, Educational attainment
    Date: 2004–08–18
  3. By: Finnie, Ross; Lascelles, Eric; Sweetman, Arthur
    Abstract: This research finds that family background (parental education level, family type, ethnicity, location) has important direct and indirect effects on post-secondary participation. The indirect effects of background operate through a set of intermediate variables representing high school outcomes and related attitudes and behaviours. Overall, the large fraction of the family background effect that operates through indirect channels indicates that the period of life before post-secondary financing and related issues become important is crucial for equitable and efficient post-secondary access. These results are based on two sex-specific measures of access (Any Post-secondary, and University) obtained from Statistics Canada's School Leavers and Follow-Up Surveys.
    Keywords: Social conditions, Education, Families, Educational attainment
    Date: 2005–01–18
  4. By: Signe Jauhiainen
    Abstract: There is empirical evidence (see e.g. Costa & Kahn 2000) that the educational background of both spouses has an effect on regional concentration. Finnish people have been migrating to urban regions. Especially higher education graduates prefer to live in cities. Because of this process human capital is concentrated in urban regions. Regional concentration of human capital can also be looked from a family perspective. A higher education graduate often has a spouse who has also graduated from university. In this situation the family moves to a region where they can find satisfying jobs. This study examines the residential choice of couples in which both spouses have higher education degree. The aim of this study is to find out where these couples live. In addition, families with different educational backgrounds are compared. The comparison might tell about the reasons of a family’s residential choice. Micro level data is used in empirical analysis.
    Date: 2005–08
  5. By: Picot, Garnett; Morissette, René; Ostrovsky, Yuri
    Abstract: This study extends previous work on the evolution of the education premium, and investigates the existence of diverging university/high school earnings ratio trends across industries in the knowledge-based economy. The study also discusses the changing demand for high-skilled workers by comparing relative wages of university graduates holding degrees in "applied" fields to those of other university graduates (the "field" premium).
    Keywords: Education, Labour, Educational attainment, Salaries and wages
    Date: 2004–09–29
  6. By: Drolet, Marie
    Abstract: This paper examines the extent to which the relationship between participation in post-secondary education and family background, namely parental income and parental education changed between 1993 and 2001. The results support a long-standing pattern that university participation rates are highest among youths from high-income families and of highly educated parents. There is no evidence to suggest that this relationship between university participation and family background changed over the 1993-2001 period. Although university participation rates generally rise as family incomes increase, there is little difference in participation rates among youths from modest-income (below $75,000) and low-income families. Overall, the correlation between university participation and family income changed very little between 1993 and 2001. Next, when taking account of both parental education and parental income, university participation rates are more strongly associated with parents' level of education than with their income. The paper discusses significant data gaps and concludes that these data gaps do not have important implications on conclusions about the relationship between post-secondary education and family background throughout the 1993-2001 period.
    Keywords: Education, Educational attainment
    Date: 2005–02–16
  7. By: Morissette, René; Johnson, Anick
    Abstract: This study explores the labour market performance of low and high educated couples using Census data for the period 1980 to 2000.
    Keywords: Education, Labour, Personal finance and household finance, Educational attainment, Salaries and wages, Income
    Date: 2004–10–13
  8. By: Oreopoulos, Phil
    Abstract: Compulsory school laws have existed in Canada for more than a hundred years, and policies to mandate further education continue to be discussed. This paper examines the impact of these laws on education attainment and on subsequent social economic outcomes for individuals compelled to stay in school. The findings indicate that mandating education substantially increased adult income and substantially decreased the likelihood of being below the low income cut-off, unemployed, and in a manual occupation. Considering possible costs incurred while attending school, these findings suggest compulsory schooling legislation was effective in generating large lifetime gains to would-be-dropouts.
    Date: 2005–05–19
  9. By: Marisa Hidalgo (Universidad de Alicante)
    Abstract: The belief that peers' characteristics influence the behavior and outcomes of students in school has been important in shaping public policy. How peers affect individuals depends on the educational system prevailing. I analyze two different systems: tracking and mixing, and I propose several criteria to compare them. I find that at compulsory level, average human capital across the population is maximized under tracking, although tracking does not dominates mixing according to first order stochastic dominance. The education system that maximizes college attendance depends on the income level in the population and on the opportunity cost of college attendance.
    Keywords: Peer Effects, Tracking, Mixing, Income Premium
    JEL: D63 I28 J24
    Date: 2005–03
  10. By: Charlotte Christiansen; Juanna Schröter Joensen (Department of Economics, University of Aarhus, Denmark)
    Abstract: In this paper we analyze investments in human capital assets in a way which is standard for financial assets, but not (yet) for human capital assets. We study mean-variance plots of human capital assets. We compare the properties of human capital returns using a performance measure and by sing tests for mean-variance spanning. A risk-return trade-off is revealed, hich is not only related to the length of education but also to the type of education. We identify a range of educations that are efficient in terms of investment goods, and a range of educations that are inefficient, and may be chosen for consumption purposes.
    Keywords: Educational Choice; Efficient Frontier; Human Capital Investment; Mean-Variance Analysis
    JEL: I21 J24
    Date: 2006–02–01
  11. By: Nigel C. O'Leary (WELMERC, University of Wales Swansea); Peter J. Sloane (WELMERC, University of Wales Swansea and IZA Bonn)
    Abstract: Earlier papers have found considerable heterogeneity in the returns to degrees in relation to subjects of study, degree classification and higher education institution. In this paper we examine heterogeneity of returns across British regions using the Labour Force Survey. We find substantial variations in the financial rewards available to graduates across regions with much higher returns in London and the South East than elsewhere, although adjusting for regional differences in the cost-of-living narrows such differences considerably. Decompositional analysis, after controlling for regional differences in both occupational and industrial structures, suggests that coefficient effects dominate composition effects, consistent with agglomeration effects being important. These results have implications for the recent changes to student funding in England, Scotland and Wales.
    Keywords: education, degree, rates of return, regions
    JEL: A22 A23 I21 J31 R1
    Date: 2006–01
  12. By: Byron F. Lutz
    Abstract: In the early 1990s, nearly forty years after Brown v. the Board of Education, three Supreme Court decisions dramaically altered the legal environment for court-ordered desegregation. Lower courts have released numerous school districts from their desegregation plans as a result. Over the same period racial segregation increased in public schools across the country -- a phenomenon which has been termed resegregation. Using a unique dataset, this paper finds that dismissal of a court-ordered desegregation plan results in a gradual, moderate increase in racial segregation and an increase in black dropout rates and black private school attendance. The increased dropout rates and private school attendance are experienced only by districts located outside of the South Census region. There is no evidence of an effect on white student along any dimension.
    Date: 2005
  13. By: Peter W. De Langen
    Abstract: The quality and availability of labour is essential for the economic performance of clusters. The availability of labour in clusters is superior compared to locations outside clusters, because labour is more mobile in clusters, education services in clusters are better and employees in clusters have a higher willingness to invest in specific skills. These effects arise ‘spontaneously’, as a result of ‘market forces’. Apart, from these effects, in some clusters, firms and governments also actively aim to improve the quality of the labour pool in the cluster. Clusters differ in the extent to which relevant stakeholders manage to invest in the quality of the labour pool. Thus, superior ‘organising capacity’ is a potential source of competitive advantage of a cluster vis-à-vis other clusters. This paper presents an analysis of these efforts of firms and governments to improve the quality of the labour force in three seaport clusters. The concept of a ‘training and education regime’ is used to analyse efforts of firms and governments to improve the labour pool. The results of three case studies of port clusters lead to a number of conclusions. First, the assumption that the quality of training and education regime differs substantially per cluster is validated. Second, the presence of a ‘regime manager’ adds to the quality of Rotterdam’s training and education regime. Such an organisation may be effective across countries and clusters. Finally, the presence of leader firms, willing to invest in training and education improves an education regime.
    Date: 2005–08
  14. By: Corak, Miles; Lauzon, Darren
    Abstract: This paper adopts the decomposition technique of DiNardo, Fortin and Lemieux (DFL, 1996) to decompose provincial differences in the distribution of Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) test scores and assesses the relative contribution of provincial differences in the distribution of "class size" and time-in-term, other school factors and student background factors. Class size and time-in-term are both important school choice variables and we examine how provincial achievement differences would change if the Alberta distribution of class size and time-in-term prevailed in the other provinces. Results differ by province, and for provinces where mean achievement gaps would be lower, not all students would benefit.
    Keywords: Education, Students
    Date: 2005–11–22
  15. By: Lipps, Garth
    Abstract: Early adolescence is a time of rapid social, cognitive, and physical change. For some youth, these changes can make this period a vulnerable point in development. Adding to the stress, some students transfer from an elementary school to a middle school or to a comprehensive high school. While the impact on youth of moving to a higher level of schooling has been the focus of intense research and debate in the United States, surprisingly little research has been conducted examining how Canadian youth make this transition within the context of Canadian schools. With this in mind, this paper examines the academic, behavioural and emotional adjustment of Canadian adolescents who transfer from an elementary school to a middle or comprehensive high school and compares their outcomes to those of a group of youth who did not change schools. Results of several statistical analyses suggest that changing schools had little systematic association to adolescents' academic outcomes. This held true regardless of whether the school was a middle school or a comprehensive high school. Similarly, transferring to a middle school had little negative association to adolescents' emotional and behavioural outcomes. Indeed, with respect to social aggression, the analyses suggested that students in middle schools may use indirect or socially directed aggression less frequently than students who remained in elementary school. However, transferring directly from an elementary school to a comprehensive high school appeared to have some negative emotional consequences. Youth who moved directly from an elementary school to a high school reported greater symptoms of physical stress. Further, female students who directly transfer to high schools at ages 12 and 13, reported higher levels of depressive affect than female adolescents who remained in an elementary school.
    Keywords: Education, Social conditions, Students, Social behaviour
    Date: 2005–03–01
  16. By: Leslie S. Stratton (Virginia Commonwealth University and IZA Bonn); Dennis M. O’Toole (Virginia Commonwealth University); James N. Wetzel (Virginia Commonwealth University)
    Abstract: We use data from the 1990/94 Beginning Post-Secondary Survey to determine whether the factors associated with long-term attrition from higher education differ for students who initially enrolled part-time as compared to for students who initially enrolled full-time. Using a two-stage sequential decision model to analyze the initial enrollment intensity decision jointly with attrition, we find no evidence of correlation in the unobservables that necessitates joint estimation, but substantial evidence that the factors associated with attrition differ by initial enrollment status. The timing of initial enrollment, academic performance, parental education, household characteristics, and economic factors had a substantially greater impact on those initially enrolled full-time, while racial and ethnic characteristics had a greater impact on those initially enrolled part-time. The results of our study suggest that separate specifications are necessary to identify at-risk full-time as compared with at-risk part-time students.
    Keywords: college enrollment, college dropout, part-time enrollment
    JEL: I21
    Date: 2006–01
  17. By: Heisz, Andrew; Oreopoulos, Philip
    Abstract: In a setting where training or promotion opportunity depend on expected initial ability, the effects of signalling initial skills on wages may last well beyond the period when knowledge of a workers' skill set is fully known. This paper proposes extending recent tests for signalling to better accommodate training differences by using firm-level characteristics and applying these tests to a large sample of MBA and law graduates from different ranked schools.
    Keywords: Education, Labour, Training, Employment
    Date: 2006–01–05
  18. By: Enrique López-Bazo; Rosina Moreno
    Abstract: Theoretical contributions to the literature have stressed the role of human capital in promoting economic growth. However, the empirical exercises have provided mixed evidence on the real effect of such type of capital. Most of the evidence has been obtained by estimating growth equations or production functions using samples of (heterogeneous) countries. In this paper, we report empirical evidence on the effects of human capital in the sample of Spanish regions. As they are supposed to be more homogeneous economies from an institutional, social and economic perspective, we assume that the evidence provide in this paper is a more robust measure of the real effects of human capital in stimulating the take off of lagging economies. We departure from the traditional empirical approach as our estimates come from the dual framework. This easily allows us to get not only the aggregate return to human capital, but also some other important measures such as its shadow price, that is the willingness to pay for an extra year of education of firm’s employees, and the degree of complementariety/substitutability with other types of capital. Results suggest that human capital has exerted a significant effect in the Spanish regions, which is stronger in the less developed ones. It not only have a direct effect but an indirect one by compensating the mechanism of decreasing returns to physical capital. Important conclusions for the assessment and design of regional development policies can be derived from such results.
    Date: 2005–08
  19. By: Ana Angulo; Jesus Mur
    Abstract: In this paper, we study geographical labour mobility taken by workers in Spain from a regional standpoint. Using a panel data set referred to the evolution of these decisions in the 1990-2003 period, the main objective is to determine what are the main variables that influence in labour mobility as well as to quantify their impact. To this respect, regional labour market status, spatial variations in employment opportunities and house prices have turned to be the main determinants. Furthermore, also certain socio-demographic characteristic of workers such as education, marital status and the presence of children in the household are also of great relevant.
    Date: 2005–08
  20. By: Christophe Muller (Universidad de Alicante); Christophe Nordman (DIAL, París)
    Abstract: From Tunisian matched worker-firm data in 1999, we study the returns to human capital for workers observed in two leading manufacturing sectors. Workers in the mechanical and electrical industries (IMMEE) benefit from higher returns to human capital than their counterparts in the Textile-clothing industry. In the IMMEE firms, low wage workers experience greater returns to labour market experience than high wage workers. The wage premium for on-the-job training is substantial for both sectors. However, taking into account whether formal training is still ongoing at the time of the survey, our results clearly indicate that workers bear heavy costs for their training. Our analysis shows that on-the-job training (OJT) and education can be efficient channels of policies aiming at raising earnings for low wages as well as high wages workers. However, careful consideration of the industrial sector should accompany these policies since specific impact of education, experience, OJT are found in the studied sectors.
    Keywords: wage, returns to human capital, matched worker-firm data, quantile regressions, Tunisia
    JEL: J24 J31 O12
    Date: 2005–02
  21. By: James Giesecke; John Madden
    Abstract: In recent years many universities have commissioned studies of the effect of their institution on the local economy. Typically these impact studies have concentrated on the demand-side stimuli to the regional economy that the university generates. Normally, the studies are undertaken with comparative-static input-output models. The present study employs a dynamic multiregional computable general equilibrium model to investigate supply-side as well as demand-side effects. There are a range of supply-side effects that have been investigated in the spatial econometrics literature. The supply-side impacts of the university that we examine in particular are a rise in the average skill level of the local workforce, and successful R&D outcomes. CGE modelling allows simulation of the associated productivity effects, while the dynamic features of the model allow for consequent effects on the region's population and capital stock growth rates to be taken into account.
    Date: 2005–08

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