nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2006‒07‒09
eleven papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
Universidade da Beira Interior

  1. Peer Effects, Social Multipliers and Migrants at School: An International Comparison By Horst Entorf; Martina Lauk
  2. Education and Health: Evaluating Theories and Evidence By David M. Cutler; Adriana Lleras-Muney
  3. The Effect of Female Education on Fertility and Infant Health: Evidence from School Entry Policies Using Exact Date of Birth By Justin McCrary; Heather Royer
  4. Does the Diversity of Human Capital Increase GDP? A Comparison of Education Systems By Katsuya Takii; Ryuichi Tanaka
  5. The effect of education on cognitive ability By Torberg Falch; Sofia Sandgren
  6. On the Importance of Finnishing School: Half a Century of Inter-generational Economic Mobility in Finland By Sari Pekkala; Robert E.B. Lucas
  7. Plus/Minus Grading and Motivation: An Empirical Study of Student Choice and Performance. By James E. McClure; Lee C. Spector
  8. Exploiting States' Mistakes to Identify the Causal Impact of Education on Growth (August, 2005). Joint with Philippe Aghion, Caroline Hoxby and Jerome Vandenbussche. By Leah Platt Boustan
  9. Measuring Skill-upgrading in the Dutch Labor Market By Dupuy Arnaud
  10. Differential Effects of Active Labour Market Programmes in the Early Stages of Young People's Unemployment By Kari Hämäläinen; Virve Ollikainen
  11. Educação e Fecundidade em Portugal: As diferenças nos níveis de educação influenciam as taxas de fecundidade? By Conceição Rego; Maria Filomena Mendes; António Caleiro

  1. By: Horst Entorf; Martina Lauk
    Abstract: This article analyses the school performance of migrants dependent on peer groups in different international schooling environments. Using data from the international OECD PISA test, we consider social interaction within and between groups of natives and migrants. Results based on social multipliers (Glaeser et al. 2000, 2003) suggest that both native-tonative and migrant-to-migrant peer effects are higher in ability-differencing school systems than in comprehensive schools. Thus, non-comprehensive school systems seem to magnify the prevailing educational inequality between students with a low parental socioeconomic migration background and children from more privileged families. Students with a migration background and a disadvantageous parental status benefit from higher diversity within schools.
    Keywords: Peer effects, migration, education, social multipliers, school systems, parental socioeconomic background
    JEL: I21
    Date: 2006–07–04
  2. By: David M. Cutler; Adriana Lleras-Muney
    Abstract: There is a large and persistent association between education and health. In this paper, we review what is known about this link. We first document the facts about the relationship between education and health. The education ‘gradient’ is found for both health behaviors and health status, though the former does not fully explain the latter. The effect of education increases with increasing years of education, with no evidence of a sheepskin effect. Nor are there differences between blacks and whites, or men and women. Gradients in behavior are biggest at young ages, and decline after age 50 or 60. We then consider differing reasons why education might be related to health. The obvious economic explanations – education is related to income or occupational choice – explain only a part of the education effect. We suggest that increasing levels of education lead to different thinking and decision-making patterns. The monetary value of the return to education in terms of health is perhaps half of the return to education on earnings, so policies that impact educational attainment could have a large effect on population health.
    JEL: I1 I2
    Date: 2006–07
  3. By: Justin McCrary; Heather Royer
    Abstract: This paper uses age-at-school-entry policies to identify the effect of female education on fertility and infant health. We focus on sharp contrasts in schooling, fertility, and infant health between women born just before and after the school entry date. School entry policies affect female education and the quality of a woman’s mate and have generally small, but possibly heterogeneous, effects on fertility and infant health. We argue that school entry policies manipulate primarily the education of young women at risk of dropping out of school.
    JEL: C3 D1 I1 J2
    Date: 2006–06
  4. By: Katsuya Takii (Osaka School of International Public Policy, Osaka University); Ryuichi Tanaka (Graduate School of Information Science and Engineering, Tokyo Institute of Technology)
    Abstract: This paper examines how different education systems affect GDP by influencing the diversity of human capital. We construct an overlapping generation model in which agents are heterogeneous in income and innate ability, and the final goods are produced with differentiated intermediate goods. We analyze an economy in which an income distribution converges to a stationary distribution. It is shown that the diversity of human capital induced by income inequality always lowers the GDP of the next period, while the diversity of human capital induced by heterogeneous ability can increase GDP, if the produced intermediate goods are sufficiently substitutable and firms have a large span of control. Hence, as public education equalizes education resources across households, it mitigates the negative effect of income inequality on GDP, while the effects of ability tracking crucially depend on the production structure of the economy.
    Keywords: Span of control, Complementarities, Human capital, Ability tracking
    JEL: D31 D72 H42 I22 O11 O15
    Date: 2006–07
  5. By: Torberg Falch (Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology); Sofia Sandgren (Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology)
    Abstract: We analyze whether the amount of schooling influences intelligence as measured by IQ tests. By use of a novel longitudinal dataset we are able to condition on early cognitive ability to account for selection into non-compulsory schooling when estimating the effect on cognitive ability at age 20. OLS estimates indicate that one year of schooling increases IQ by 2.8-3.5 points (about 0.2 standard deviations). When family income per family member and teacher evaluations of the individuals at age 10 are used as instruments for schooling and early cognitive ability, the return to schooling is estimated to 3.5-3.8 IQ points.
    Keywords: Cognitive ability; Education production; Return to schooling
    JEL: I21 J24
    Date: 2006–06–10
  6. By: Sari Pekkala; Robert E.B. Lucas
    Abstract: Trends in inter-generational economic mobility in Finland are analyzed using panel data from 1950 through 1999 on more than 200 thousand sons and daughters born between 1930 and 1970. A significant decline is estimated in the inter-generational transmission elasticity from the 1930 birth cohort until the baby boom cohorts of the early 1950s. After that we observe no increase in the extent of mobility for the 1950s and 1960s birth cohorts. The quite dramatic transformation of the Finnish economy in the second half of the twentieth century is outlined in the paper. A decomposition of the intergenerational transmission elasticities across cohorts shows that most of the decline in transmission reflected a reduction in the impact of family income on duration of children's education accompanied by a decline in the returns to schooling. Despite the large volume of rural - urban migration during this period of transformation, regional mobility played only a minor role in increasing economic mobility.
    Keywords: Inter-generational mobility, cohorts, education, migration
    JEL: J62
    Date: 2005–02–10
  7. By: James E. McClure (Department of Economics, Ball State University); Lee C. Spector (Department of Economics, Ball State University)
    Abstract: This paper considers whether student motivation might be impacted by the replacement of a straight (A, B, C, D, F) grading system with a plus/minus system (A, A-, B+ . . . D-, F). The data that are examined are from several undergraduate economics classes at a mid-sized Midwestern university in the United States. The data includes student characteristics, student performance, and students' choices of either a plus/minus or a straight grading system. In this admittedly small scale study students, who chose plus/minus grading, were not significantly more motivated than students who opted for straight grading.
    Keywords: Student Motivation, Plus/Minus grading, undergraduate education
    Date: 2004–01
  8. By: Leah Platt Boustan
  9. By: Dupuy Arnaud (ROA wp)
    Abstract: An important factor of shifts in the skills composition of the workforceis the upgrading of the qualifications demanded in the variousjobs in the economy, the so-called skill-upgrading. This skill-upgradingis principally caused by the development of new technologies that demandmore or different skills to be efficiently operated or by organizationalchanges that lead to increase the skills demanded to perfomthe tasks of the various occupations. Drawing from the microeconomicfoundations of demand shifts, this paper presents an empiricalmethodology to estimate the speed of skill-upgrading in different periods.
    Keywords: education, training and the labour market;
    Date: 2006
  10. By: Kari Hämäläinen; Virve Ollikainen
    Abstract: This study evaluates the long-run effects of Finnish active labour market programmes in youth labour markets. The effectiveness of programmes is measured by a number of outcomes, including employment, unemployment, programme participation, education, being out of the labour force and annual earnings. A non-parametric propensity score matching approach adapted for the case of multiple programmes is applied to estimate the average programme effects. Our results point out distinct variation in the success of programmes, and indicate that job placement and labour market training are successful not only in promoting employment but also in increasing the earnings of participants. The largest of all programmes, youth practical training, is not found to have any impacts on young persons? labour market careers.
    Keywords: active labour market programmes, propensity score, matching, heterogeneous treatment effects JEL classification: C14, J13, J68; active labour market programmes, propensity score, matching, heterogeneous treatment effects
    JEL: J13 J68 C14
    Date: 2004–12–31
  11. By: Conceição Rego (Department of Economics, University of Évora); Maria Filomena Mendes (Department of Sociology, University of Évora); António Caleiro (Department of Economics, University of Évora)
    Abstract: O aumento nos níveis de produto e de rendimento é uma condição fundamental para a promoção do desenvolvimento económico, nos países e nas regiões. Ceteris paribus, níveis de rendimento mais elevados permitem que as famílias possam usufruir de níveis de rendimento disponível também mais elevados e, consequentemente, melhorar o seu nível de bem-estar. A teoria do capital humano mostra-nos, a nível territorial, a estreita relação entre o aumento da riqueza e os níveis de qualificação da população. Níveis elevados nestas variáveis – rendimento e habilitações escolares – traduzem-se, pelo menos nos países da Europa, em níveis também maiores de riqueza. Por outro lado, sabemos que os territórios não poderão promover processos sustentados de desenvolvimento económico e social, particularmente em termos inter-geracionais, se o número de filhos que cada família tem for insuficiente para garantir a substituição de gerações. Portugal é um dos países europeus com mais baixos níveis de rendimento (apenas 68.7% do PIB per capita em 2003), baixos níveis de qualificação no mercado de trabalho (cerca de 40% da população activa, em 2002, não tinha qualquer nível de instrução ou tinha apenas o 1º ciclo do ensino básico) e, simultaneamente com reduzidos níveis de fecundidade (em média, 1.4 filhos por mulher, em 2004). Efectivamente, este cenário coloca sérios desafios a Portugal, no que respeita à melhoria do comportamento destas variáveis. Assim, com esta comunicação propomo-nos, a partir de dados estatísticos para os concelhos de Portugal continental, analisar a existência de inter-relações entre as diferenças nos níveis de educação – particularmente das mulheres – e o número médio de filhos
    Keywords: Desenvolvimento económico, Desigualdades de rendimento, Diferenças nos níveis de educação, Fecundidade, Portugal
    JEL: A13 I21 J13 J31 O10
    Date: 2006

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