nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2012‒05‒08
thirteen papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
University of Beira Interior and Technical University of Lisbon

  1. Why do university graduates regret their study program? A comparison between Spain and the Netherlands By Aleksander Kucel; Montserrat Vilalta-Bufi
  2. Problem-based learning in secondary education: Evaluation by a randomized experiment By De Witte, Kristof; Rogge, Nicky
  3. Assesing Educational Equality and Equity with Large-Scale Assessment Data: Brazil as a Case Study By J. Douglas Willms; Lucía Tramonte; Jesús Duarte; María Soledad Bos
  4. Empowering Women Through Education: Evidence from Sierra Leone By Naci H. Mocan; Colin Cannonier
  5. The returns to private education: evidence from Mexico By Chiara Binelli; Marta Rubio Codina
  6. Immigrant Pupils' Scientific Performance: The Influence of Educational System Features of Origin and Destination Countries By Jaap Dronkers; Manon de Heus; Mark Levels
  7. Accounting for economies of scope in performance evaluations of university professors By De Witte, Kristof; Rogge, Nicky; Cherchye, Laurens; Van Puyenbroeck, Tom
  8. Decomposing the Rural-Urban Differential in Student Achievement in Colombia Using PISA Microdata By Ramos, Raul; Duque, Juan Carlos; Nieto, Sandra
  9. Electoral Impacts of Uncovering Public School Quality: Evidence from Brazilian Municipalities By Firpo, Sergio; Pieri, Renan; Souza, André Portela
  10. The Effect of Early Entrepreneurship Education: Evidence from a Randomized Field Experiment By Rosendahl Huber, Laura; Sloof, Randolph; van Praag, Mirjam
  11. Measuring Business Schools’ Service Quality in an Emerging Market Using an Extended SERVQUAL Instrument By Esther Mbise; Ronald S.J. Tuninga
  12. Gender Effects of Education on Economic Development in Turkey By Aysit Tansel; Nil Demet Güngör
  13. More Apples Less Chips? The Effect of School Fruit Schemes on the Consumption of Junk Food By Brunello, Giorgio; De Paola, Maria; Labartino, Giovanna

  1. By: Aleksander Kucel; Montserrat Vilalta-Bufi (Universitat de Barcelona)
    Abstract: In this paper we investigate the determinants of regret of study program for university graduates in Spain and the Netherlands. These two countries differ in their educational system in terms of their educational tracking in secondary education level and the strength of their education-labor market linkages in tertiary education. Therefore, by comparing Spain and the Netherlands, we aim at learning about the consequences that the two educational systems might have on university program regret. Basing on the psychological literature on regret, we derive some expectations on the determinants of regret of study program. Results reveal that, both education track and education-labor mismatch of tertiary education, are important determinants of the likelihood of program regret. Results allow us to derive some policy recommendations on the tertiary education system.
    Keywords: higher education, regret, horizontal mismatch, tertiary education, overeducation, study program
    JEL: I23 J24
    Date: 2012
  2. By: De Witte, Kristof (KULeuven, Maastricht Universiteit); Rogge, Nicky (Hogeschool-Universiteit Brussel (HUB))
    Abstract: The effectiveness of problem based learning (PBL) in terms of increasing student knowledge and skills has been extensively studied for higher education students and in non-experimental settings. This paper tests the effectiveness of PBL as an alternative instruction method in secondary education. In a controlled randomized experiment, we estimate its effect on tested student attainments, on perceived student attainments, on autonomous and controlled motivation and on class atmosphere. The outcomes indicate a non-significant negative effect on student achievements, a non-significant effect on motivation and a significant positive effect on class atmosphere.
    Keywords: Problem-based learning; Secondary education; Student achievements; Student motivation;Classroom social climate; Randomized experiment
    Date: 2012–02
  3. By: J. Douglas Willms; Lucía Tramonte; Jesús Duarte; María Soledad Bos
    Abstract: Researchers have defined and assessed inequalities and inequities in education in various ways, making it difficult to make comparisons among countries or among jurisdictions within countries. This paper sets out practical definitions for equality and equity in education and discusses the prominent issues regarding the use of large-scale national and international assessment data to assess them. Examples are drawn from the national assessment data from Brazil.
    Keywords: Education :: Educational Assessment, Education :: Teacher Education & Quality, Education, equality, equity, indicators, school resources, student performance, teacher quality
    JEL: I24
    Date: 2012–03
  4. By: Naci H. Mocan; Colin Cannonier
    Abstract: We use data from Sierra Leone where a substantial education program provided increased access to education for primary-school age children but did not benefit children who were older. We exploit the variation in access to the program generated by date of birth and the variation in resources between various districts of the country. We find that the program has increased educational attainment and that an increase in education has changed women’s preferences. An increase in schooling, triggered by the program, had an impact on women’s attitudes towards matters that impact women’s health and on attitudes regarding violence against women. An increase in education has also reduced the number of desired children by women and increased their propensity to use modern contraception and to be tested for AIDS. While education makes women more intolerant of practices that conflict with their well-being, increased education has no impact on men’s attitudes towards women’s well-being.
    JEL: I12 I15 I18 I21 I25 I28 J13 J18
    Date: 2012–04
  5. By: Chiara Binelli (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University of Southampton); Marta Rubio Codina (Institute for Fiscal Studies)
    Abstract: Despite the rapid expansion and increasing importance of private education in developing countries, very little is known about the impact of studying in private schools on educational attainment and wages. This paper contributes to fiÂ…lling this gap by estimating the returns to private high schools in Mexico. We construct a unique dataset that combines labor market outcomes and historical school census data, and we exploit changes in the availability and size of public and private high schools across states and over time for identiÂ…cation. We Â…nd substantial evidence of a positive effect of studying in a private high school on wages after college graduation, and we discuss alternative mechanisms that can explain this Â…finding.
    Keywords: The Market Returns to Private High Schools: Evidence from Mexico
    JEL: J31 J24 C36
    Date: 2012–04
  6. By: Jaap Dronkers (Maastricht University); Manon de Heus; Mark Levels (Maastricht University)
    Abstract: This paper explores the extent to which educational system features of destination and origin countries can explain differences in immigrant children's educational achievement. Using data from the 2006 PISA survey, we performed cross- classified multilevel analysis on the science performance of 9.279 15-year-old immigrant children, originating from 35 different countries, living in 16 Western countries of destination. We take into account a number of educational system characteristics of the countries of destination and origin, in order to measure the importance of differentiation, standardization, and the availability of resources. Our results show that differences in educational achievement between immigrants cannot be fully attributed to individual characteristics. Educational system characteristics of countries of destination and origin are also meaningful. At the origin level, the length of compulsory education positively influences educational performance. This is especially the case for immigrant pupils who attended education in their countries of origin. Results show that at the destination level, teacher shortage negatively affects immigrant pupil's scientific performance. Moreover, immigrant children perform less in highly stratified systems than they do in moderately differentiated or comprehensive ones. Especially immigrant children with highly educated parents perform worse in highly stratified systems.
    Keywords: immigration, origin, destination, educational system, educational performance,PISA.
    Date: 2012–04
  7. By: De Witte, Kristof (KULeuven, Maastricht Universiteit); Rogge, Nicky (Hogeschool-Universiteit Brussel (HUB)); Cherchye, Laurens (KULeuven, Tilburg University); Van Puyenbroeck, Tom (Hogeschool-Universiteit Brussel (HUB))
    Abstract: Teaching and research are widely regarded as the two key activities of academics. We propose a tailored version of the popular Data Envelopment Analysis methodology to evaluate the overall performance of university faculty. The methodology enables accounting for the potential presence of economies of scope between the teaching and research activities. It is illustrated with a dataset of professors working at a Business & Administration department of a university college. The estimation results reveal that overall the performance scores of faculty decrease if we allow for spillovers from research to teaching and vice-versa.
    Keywords: Teaching-research nexus, Data envelopment analysis, Conditional efficiency, Economies of scope, Higher education
    Date: 2012–02
  8. By: Ramos, Raul (University of Barcelona); Duque, Juan Carlos (Universidad EAFIT); Nieto, Sandra (University of Barcelona)
    Abstract: Despite the large number of studies that draw on Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) microdata in their analyses of the determinants of educational outcomes, no more than a few consider the relevance of geographical location. In going some way to rectify this, our paper examines the differences in educational outcomes between students attending schools in rural areas and those enrolled in urban schools. We use microdata from the 2006 and 2009 PISA survey waves for Colombia. The Colombian case is particularly interesting in this regard due to the structural changes suffered by the country in recent years, both in terms of its political stability and of the educational reform measures introduced. Our descriptive analysis of the data shows that the educational outcomes of rural students are worse than those of urban students. In order to identify the factors underpinning this differential, we use the Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition and then exploit the time variation in the data using the methodology proposed by Juhn-Murphy-Pierce. Our results show that most of the differential is attributable to family characteristics as opposed to those of the school. From a policy perspective, our evidence supports actions addressed at improving conditions in the family rather than measures of positive discrimination of rural schools.
    Keywords: educational outcomes, rural-urban differences, decomposition methods
    JEL: J24 I25 R58
    Date: 2012–04
  9. By: Firpo, Sergio (São Paulo School of Economics); Pieri, Renan (São Paulo School of Economics); Souza, André Portela (São Paulo School of Economics)
    Abstract: School accountability systems that establish the adoption of incentives for teachers and school managers usually impact positively students’ performance. However, in many circumstances, school accountability systems may face institutional restrictions to establish rewards and sanctions to administrators. In that aspect, the Brazilian accountability system is an interesting example: Most of primary public schools are run by municipal officials and federal government cannot enforce the adoption of incentives at local level. However, because mayors of Brazilian municipalities are the ultimate responsible for public elementary education we provide evidence that in 2008 local election, just some months after the publication of the second wave of a new evaluation of public schools run every two years by federal government, mayors became electorally accountable for not improving school quality. The results show that, on average, one point increase in a 0-10 scale index from 2005 to 2007 increased by around 5 percentage points the probability of re-election. This effect is even greater in localities with lower per capita income and those where the fraction of children at school age is larger. Therefore, electoral accountability may play a complementary role in school accountability systems that had not yet been fully exploited by education and political economics and political science literatures.
    Keywords: public education, school accountability, electoral accountability, mayoral re-election races
    JEL: H11 H41 H52 H72 I21 I28
    Date: 2012–04
  10. By: Rosendahl Huber, Laura (University of Amsterdam); Sloof, Randolph (University of Amsterdam); van Praag, Mirjam (University of Amsterdam)
    Abstract: The aim of this study is to analyze the effectiveness of early entrepreneurship education. To this end, we conduct a randomized field experiment to evaluate a leading entrepreneurship education program that is taught worldwide in the final grade of primary school. We focus on pupils' development of relevant skill sets for entrepreneurial activity, both cognitive and non-cognitive. The results indicate that cognitive entrepreneurial skills are unaffected by the program. However, the program has a robust positive effect on non-cognitive entrepreneurial skills. This is surprising since previous evaluations found zero or negative effects. Because these earlier studies all pertain to education for adolescents, our result tentatively suggests that non-cognitive entrepreneurial skills are best developed at an early age.
    Keywords: skill formation, field experiment, entrepreneurship education, entrepreneurship
    JEL: L26 I21 J24 C93
    Date: 2012–04
  11. By: Esther Mbise (College of Business Education, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania.; Ronald S.J. Tuninga (Open University of the Netherlands, Heerlen, the Netherlands.
    Abstract: Purpose: An extended SERVQUAL instrument is developed, validated and used to measure perceived service quality delivered to students by business schools in an emerging market economy. Design/ Methodology/Approach: The study adopts a quantitative approach. A longitudinal survey is conducted with conveniently selected students in their final year of study from two business schools in an emerging market economy. The study is based on the Gaps model (Parasuraman et al., 1985). Procedures for developing a reliable and a valid multi-item instrument are observed. Pre-testing of the instrument has been conducted before it is administered to the sampled population. Findings: The students’ gap scores on perceived education services from an emerging economy are presented. The use of the extended SERVQUAL model is suggested to monitor student/employee expectations and perceptions during and after the education service delivery process. Students attach different weights to the service quality dimensions. The new Process Outcome dimension is found to substantially add to the SERVQUAL model and is more important than the other dimensions. The validity of the extended SERVQUAL model for practical use is >0.95. Prediction of the level of service quality delivered, using six dimensions, indicates that the level of service quality is explained mostly by Process Outcome and Tangibles dimensions. Research Limitations/Implications: The study was conducted at only two business schools, conveniently selected in an emerging market. This limits the generalization of results. The data were collected at two points in time using the same participants. This may have prompted the participants to remember responses given in the previous survey while responding in the second survey. Practical Implications: It is suggested that using the extended SERVQUAL model as a tool can enable managers of business schools to identify the factors on which students/employees base their quality assessment of the education services they receive. Knowledge of these factors will enable managers in emerging economies to periodically assess, sustain and improve quality of the whole service delivery process. Priorities can be set to allocate scarce resources properly to make effective investment decisions to improve quality per school and in higher education, in general. The paper further suggests that Regulatory bodies make use of this model when comparing performance of business schools, focusing on student experiences as a supplement to the traditional performance measures. Originality/Value: An extended SERVQUAL model has been developed and validated to measure education services quality of business schools from the perspective of students as customers who receive such services in an emerging market economy. A Process Outcome dimension measuring students’ satisfaction with the knowledge and skills received from education services has been added to the original SERVQUAL model. The study is longitudinal making it different from previous studies, which are mostly cross-sectional in nature.
    Date: 2012–03
  12. By: Aysit Tansel (Middle East Technical University); Nil Demet Güngör (Atilim University)
    Abstract: Several recent empirical studies have examined the gender effects of education on economic growth or on steady-state level of output using the much exploited, familiar cross-country data in order to determine their quantitative importance and the direction of correlation. This paper undertakes a similar study of the gender effects of education using province level data for Turkey. The main findings indicate that female education positively and significantly affects the steady-state level of labor productivity, while the effect of male education is in general either positive or insignificant. Separate examination of the effect of educational gender gap was negative on output. The results are found to be robust to a number of sensitivity analyses, such as elimination of outlier observations, controls for simultaneity and measurement errors, controls for omitted variables by including regional dummy variables, steady-state versus growth equations and considering different samples.
    Keywords: Labor Productivity, Economic Development, Education, Gender, Turkey
    JEL: O11 O15 I21 J16
    Date: 2012–04
  13. By: Brunello, Giorgio (University of Padova); De Paola, Maria (University of Calabria); Labartino, Giovanna (IRVAPP)
    Abstract: We use scanner data of supermarket sales to investigate the effects of the EU School Fruit campaign, conducted in a sample of primary schools in the city of Rome during 2010 and 2011, on the consumption of unhealthy snacks. We allocate supermarkets to treatment and control groups depending on whether they are located or not near treated schools and estimate the causal effect of the program by comparing the changes in the sales of snacks in treated stores with the changes in control stores. We find evidence that the campaign reduced the consumption of unhealthy snacks bought in stores located in high income areas. No effect is found in poorer areas. Repeated treatment does not strengthen the effects of the program.
    Keywords: EU School Fruit campaign, junk food, Rome
    JEL: I18
    Date: 2012–04

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