nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2009‒12‒19
twelve papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
Polytechnic Institute of Portalegre and Technical University of Lisbon

  1. Open University Admission Policies and Drop Out Rates in Europe By Veruska Oppedisano
  2. Online or university education By Paksoy, HB
  3. Educational outcomes in secondary schools in Bologna By Maria Serena Borgia; Lucia Pasquini
  4. The (Adverse) Effects of Expanding Higher Education: Evidence from Italy By Veruska Oppedisano
  5. Can school competition improve standards? The case of faith schools in England By Rebecca Allen; Anna Vignoles
  6. Raindrops for Education: How To Improve Water Access in Schools? By Acácio Lourete; Christian Lehmann; Raquel Tsukada
  7. Do Education Decisions Respond to Returns by Field of Study? By Gunderson, Morley; Krashinsky, Harry
  8. Bologna changes in MA degree programmes. Convergence of the public administration programmes in South-Eastern Europe By Matei , Lucica
  9. Wage inequality and returns to schooling in Europe: a semi-parametric approach using EU-SILC data By Biagetti, Marco; Scicchitano, Sergio
  10. Education policy networks in a comparative perspective: Germany, Switzerland, Great Britain and New Zealand By Nagel, Alexander-Kenneth; Knodel, Philipp
  11. Inter-industry Wage Premia in Portugal: Evidence from EU-SILC data By Biagetti, Marco; Scicchitano, Sergio
  12. A Non-Experimental Evaluation of Curricular Effectiveness in Math By Cory Koedel; Rachana Bhatt

  1. By: Veruska Oppedisano (The Geary Institute, UCD)
    Abstract: The paper develops a model of educational choices with uncertainty to account for the high drop out rate in countries with open admission policies at university entry. As long as university entry reveals useful information, students have incentives to enroll, update their beliefs and choose whether to continue university or drop out.
    Keywords: uncertainty, admission policy, higher education
    JEL: I20
    Date: 2009–12–10
  2. By: Paksoy, HB
    Abstract: The meaning is clear: The Student is submitting to the will of the higher authority, for the sake of making more money. Will that behavior also just as easily transfer to the political will of higher authority, to induce the Students to unthinkingly repeat the painful atrocities of the past, because they were not taught them?
    Keywords: Higher education; online education; power; history; didactics.
    JEL: B3 B2
    Date: 2009–11
  3. By: Maria Serena Borgia (Unibo. Dip. Statistica); Lucia Pasquini (Unibo. Dip. Statistica)
    Abstract: In recent years the analysis of educational outcomes has become increasingly important due mainly to the importance of success at school and the role of the modern school, where students are trained on how to make inroads and work towards planning their lives. In keeping with law no 144/1999, the Province of Bologna local authority collects data on student individuals of compulsory schooling age. This survey represents a complete coverage of the territory. The aim of this study is to use the data on individuals to explain the educational outcomes of these students. We have analysed the data on 5,944 students who were born in 1988 and who attended secondary schools in the province of Bologna in one or more of the five school years from 2002/03 to 2006/07. At first we calculated the success probabilities by gender and institute; later, in order to determine and quantify the influence of students' individual characteristics on final outcomes we estimated five logistic regressions, one for each school year and class attended. Our models confirm the exploratory analysis: variables such as gender, citizenship and the type of school attended do affect educational outcomes.
    Keywords: Esiti scolastici, Probabilità di successo, Regressione logistica Educational Outcomes, Success Probabilities, Logistic Regression
    Date: 2009
  4. By: Veruska Oppedisano (The Geary Institute, UCD)
    Abstract: Over the period 1995–1998 Italy experienced an expansion of its higher education supply with the aim of reducing regional differences in educational attainment. This paper evaluates the effects of this policy by combining differences across provinces in the number of campuses constructed with differences across cohorts of secondary school leavers. A sequential model of educational choices with uncertainty is derived and estimated. Findings suggest that enrollment rose, particularly among middle ability individuals from less favorable backgrounds, as well as the probability of being retained in the university system. The decline in passed exams, especially experienced in Southern regions, casts doubts on the policy effectiveness in reducing regional disparities.
    Keywords: Higher Education, Italy, School Choices, Uncertainty
    JEL: I2
    Date: 2009–12–10
  5. By: Rebecca Allen (Depatment of Quantitative Social Science - Institute of Education, University of London.); Anna Vignoles (Depatment of Quantitative Social Science - Institute of Education, University of London.)
    Abstract: This paper measures the extent to which the presence of religious state-funded secondary schools in England impacts on the educational experiences of pupils who attend neighbouring schools, whether through school effort induced by competition or changes in peer groups induced by sorting. National administrative data is used to estimate pupil test score growth models between the ages of 11 and 16, with instrumental variable methods employed to avoid confounding the direct causal effect of religious schools. It finds significant evidence that religious schools are associated with higher levels of pupil sorting across schools, but no evidence that competition from faith schools raises area-wide pupil attainment.
    Keywords: school choice, school competition, educational outcomes
    JEL: H11 I21 I28
    Date: 2009–12–08
  6. By: Acácio Lourete (International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth); Christian Lehmann (International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth); Raquel Tsukada (International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth)
    Abstract: In many countries, efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of universal primary education have led to a rise in the number of schools built. The fact that more children may have the opportunity to attend school is a necessary but not sufficient condition to guarantee proper primary education. Complementary inputs such as the number and quality of teachers are also important. Here we focus on the adequate provision of water as one of the key determinants for pupils to acquire a proper education that meets international standards.
    Keywords: Raindrops for Education: How To Improve Water Access in Schools?
    Date: 2009–09
  7. By: Gunderson, Morley; Krashinsky, Harry
    Abstract: We utilize the 2000 cohort of university graduates from the National Graduate Survey (NGS) to estimate the extent to which the choice of field of study is influenced by expected returns to those fields of study. The expected returns are based on earnings equations estimated from the earlier 1990 NGS cohort for the years 1992 and 1995 -- years that are around the time when the 2000 cohort would be applying to university and forming expectations of their expected returns by field of study. We estimate those expected returns using conventional OLS earnings equations as well as IV estimates to account for the potential endogeneity of the returns by field of study since selection effects may bias the expected returns. Our IV estimates utilize measures of skill-biased technological change as instruments. Overall, our results suggest that prospective students do choose fields of study in part at least on the basis of earnings they can expect to receive in those fields. Furthermore, earnings expectations formed around the time they are applying are more influential than earnings expectations based on years further away from that time, although both generally have an impact on the choice of field of study.
    Keywords: Education decisions; field of study; returns to education; multi-nomial logits; National Graduate Survey (NGS)
    JEL: J21 J24 J28
    Date: 2009–11–28
  8. By: Matei , Lucica
    Abstract: The provisions of Bologna Declaration are ongoing implemented in several South- Eastern European states, members or non members of the European Union. For most states, important restructuring processes for the legal framework and organisation system of higher education were imperative. At the same time, the content of the programmes for all the three cycles was revised in order to follow closely the finalities stipulated in the European documents, substantiating the European Higher Education Area. In this context, the current paper aims to carry out the comparative analysis for the actual level attained by the mentioned states in implementing Bologna Process, with special attention towards higher education in the area of public administration. Research teams, led by the author of this paper have analysed the degree of curricular compatibility of the Bachelor programmes from various European states. This time, the research will focus on describing the process of convergence related to the delivery modalities and the content of the Master programmes in the area of public administration, corresponding to the second cycle of Bologna system. The indicators of convergence will be defined related to the standards of evaluation,used by EAPAA for accreditation of the public administration programmes.
    Keywords: Bologna process;M A public administration programmes;convergence
    JEL: D73 H75 I21
    Date: 2009–09–07
  9. By: Biagetti, Marco; Scicchitano, Sergio
    Abstract: In this paper we apply a semi-parametric approach (quantile regression - QR) to the last 2007 wave of the EU-SILC data set, in order to explore the connection between education and wage inequality in 8 European countries. We find that wages increase with education and this holds true across the whole distribution. Furthermore, this effect is generally more important at the highest quantiles of the distribution than at the lowest, implying that schooling increases wage dispersion. This evidence is found to be rather robust as showed through tests of linear hypothesis. We also corroborate the idea that, although OLS coefficients estimates are substantially in line with the QR’s, the former technique really misleads relevant information about cross-countries heterogeneity in the impact of education on within group inequality at different points of the wage distribution. Hence this paper confirms that a semi-parametric QR approach is more interesting, as well as more appropriate, because it measures the wage effect of education at different quantiles, thus describing relevant cross-countries changes or bounces not only in the location, but also in the shape of the distribution.
    Keywords: Returns to education; Wage inequality; Quantile regression; Europe
    JEL: C14 J31 I21
    Date: 2009–11–28
  10. By: Nagel, Alexander-Kenneth; Knodel, Philipp
    Abstract: International initiatives in education, such as PISA and the Bologna Process, have distinctly changed conditions framing domestic policy-making. This paper sheds light on the territorial and modal dispersion of national education policy networks by means of a systematic network analytical description. The focus is on changing patterns of interactions and coalitions between international and national as well as private and public actors. Therefore, we analyse four countries, i.e. Germany, Switzerland, Great Britain and New Zealand, in a comparative perspective. The findings show that in most countries there is indeed an internationalization of education politics taking place in the sense of an increasing participation of international actors. These actors apply a more and more diversified portfolio of governance instruments. At the same time, however, domestic veto players develop a rich set of strategies to cope, compete or collaborate with international actors. ; Internationale Initiativen, wie z.B. der Bologna Prozess oder die PISA-Studien, haben die Rahmenbedingungen nationaler Bildungspolitik grundlegend verändert. In diesem Arbeitspapier wird die Internationalisierung von Bildungspolitik aus netzwerkanalytischer Perspektive beleuchtet. Ziel ist es, den Wandel von Formen politischer Interaktion und Koalitionen zwischen internationalen und nationalen sowie privaten und öffentlichen Akteuren zu beschreiben. Dazu werden Politiknetzwerke in vier Ländern - Deutschland, Schweiz, Großbritannien und Neuseeland - vergleichend analysiert. Anhand der Befunde lässt sich eine Internationalisierung des Politikfelds Bildung erkennen, d.h. internationale Akteure treten im Kontext nationaler politischer Interaktion zunehmend in Erscheinung. Gleichzeitig zeigt sich, dass auch nationale Vetospieler Strategien entwickeln, um dieser neuen Konstellation in der Bildungspolitik zu begegnen. --
    Date: 2009
  11. By: Biagetti, Marco; Scicchitano, Sergio
    Abstract: In this paper we investigate whether inequality in the inter-industry wage premia may be explained by unobserved differences in workers’ educational skills. We use the 2007 EU-SILC data set for Portugal, a nation which can be considered a case-study, due to its high inter-industry wage dispersion. Applying both OLS and quantile regression techniques, our results suggest that this unobserved heterogeneity is not a relevant matter in the wage premia determination. We thus corroborate the previous empirical contribution to Economic Letters performed by Martins (2004).
    Keywords: Returns to education; inter-industry wage inequality; Quantile regression; Portugal
    JEL: C14 J31 I21
    Date: 2009–12–08
  12. By: Cory Koedel (Department of Economics, University of Missouri-Columbia); Rachana Bhatt
    Abstract: This paper uses non-experimental data to evaluate curricular effectiveness. We show that non-experimental methods can be used to obtain causal estimates of curricular effects at just a fraction of what it would cost to produce analogous experimental estimates. Furthermore, external validity concerns that are particularly cogent in the context of curricular evaluations suggest that a non-experimental approach may be preferred. Our results provide important insights for educational administrators and policymakers. In the short term, we find large differences in effectiveness across some math curricula. However, like many educational inputs, the effects of math curricula do not persist over time, a result that would be quite costly to attain using experimental data. Across curricula adoption cycles, publishers that produce less effective curricula in one cycle do not lose market share in the next cycle. One explanation for this result is the dearth of information available to administrators about curricular effectiveness.
    Keywords: curricular effectiveness, math curricula, non-experimental methods, matching methods, education policy
    JEL: I21 I28 H75
    Date: 2009–10–18

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