nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2012‒05‒15
seventeen papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
University of Beira Interior and Technical University of Lisbon

  1. The Dynamic Effects of Educational Accountability By Hugh Macartney
  2. Evaluating students' evaluations of professors By Michela Braga; Marco Paccagnella; Michele Pellizzari
  3. Knowledge, Tests, and Fadeout in Educational Interventions By Elizabeth U. Cascio; Douglas O. Staiger
  4. Immigration and the School System By Facundo Albornoz; Antonio Cabrales; Esther Hauk
  5. Entrepreneurial School Dropouts: A Model on Signalling, Education and Entrepreneurship By Baumgarten Skogstrøm, Jens Fredrik
  6. Education, cognitive skills and earnings of males and females By Büchner Charlotte; Smits Wendy; Velden Rolf van der
  7. A Comparative Perspective on Italy's Human Capital Accumulation By Giuseppe Bertola; Paolo Sestito
  8. The Effect of Village-Based Schools: Evidence from a Randomized Controlled Trial in Afghanistan By Dana Burde; Leigh L. Linden
  9. School Funding Formulas: Review of Main Characteristics and Impacts By Mihály Fazekas
  10. The Impact of Immigration on the Educational Attainment of Natives By Jennifer Hunt
  11. Do Migrant Girls Always Perform Better? Differences between the Reading and Math Scores of 15-Year-Old Daughters and Sons of Migrants in PISA 2009 and Variations by Region of Origin and Country of Destination By Nils Kornder; Jaap Dronkers
  12. More Apples Less Chips? The Effect of School Fruit Schemes on the Consumption of Junk Food By Giorgio Brunello; Maria De Paola; Giovanna Labartino
  13. The role of family incomes in cigarette smoking: Evidence from French students By Christian Ben Lakhdar; Grégoire Cauchie; Nicolas Gérard Vaillant; François-Charles Wolff
  14. Gouvernance éducation et croissance économique By Jellal , Mohamed; Bouzahzah, Mohamed
  15. The Gender Wage Gap by Education in Italy By Chiara MUSSIDA; Matteo PICCHIO
  16. Parental Ethnic Identity and Educational Attainment of Second-Generation Immigrants By Simone Schüller
  17. Immigrant Children's Age at Arrival and Assessment Results By Anthony Heath; Elina Kilpi-Jakonen

  1. By: Hugh Macartney
    Abstract: Recent education accountability reforms feature school-level performance targets that condition on prior scores to account for student heterogeneity. Yet doing so introduces potential dynamic distortions to incentives: teachers may be less responsive to the reform today to avoid more onerous future targets--an instance of the so-called `ratchet effect.' Guided by a dynamic model and utilizing rich educational panel data from North Carolina, I exploit school grade span variation to identify any dynamic gaming, finding compelling evidence of ratchet effects. I then directly estimate the structural parameters of the corresponding model, uncovering complementarities between teacher effort and student ability.
    Keywords: Public, Education, Personnel, Dynamic Gaming, Dynamic Incentives, Ratchet Effects, Education Production, Educational Accountability
    JEL: D82 I21 J24 J33 M52
    Date: 2012
  2. By: Michela Braga (University of Milan); Marco Paccagnella (Bank of Italy); Michele Pellizzari (Bocconi University, IGIER and IZA)
    Abstract: This paper contrasts measures of teacher effectiveness with the students’ evaluations of the same teachers using administrative data from Bocconi University (Italy). The effectiveness measures are estimated by comparing the subsequent performance in follow-on coursework of students who are randomly assigned to teachers in each of their compulsory courses. We find that, even in a setting where the syllabuses are fixed, teachers still matter substantially. Additionally, we find that our measure of teacher effectiveness is negatively correlated with the students’ evaluations of professors: in other words, teachers who are associated with better subsequent performance receive worse evaluations from their students. We rationalize these results with a simple model where teachers can either engage in real teaching or in teaching-to-the-test, the former requiring greater student effort than the latter. Teaching-to-the-test guarantees high grades in the current course but does not improve future outcomes. Hence, if students are short-sighted and give better evaluations to teachers from whom they derive higher utility in a static framework, the model is capable of predicting our empirical finding that good teachers receive bad evaluations.
    Keywords: teacher quality, postsecondary education
    JEL: I20
    Date: 2011–10
  3. By: Elizabeth U. Cascio; Douglas O. Staiger
    Abstract: Educational interventions are often evaluated and compared on the basis of their impacts on test scores. Decades of research have produced two empirical regularities: interventions in later grades tend to have smaller effects than the same interventions in earlier grades, and the test score impacts of early educational interventions almost universally “fade out” over time. This paper explores whether these empirical regularities are an artifact of the common practice of rescaling test scores in terms of a student’s position in a widening distribution of knowledge. If a standard deviation in test scores in later grades translates into a larger difference in knowledge, an intervention’s effect on normalized test scores may fall even as its effect on knowledge does not. We evaluate this hypothesis by fitting a model of education production to correlations in test scores across grades and with college-going using both administrative and survey data. Our results imply that the variance in knowledge does indeed rise as children progress through school, but not enough for test score normalization to fully explain these empirical regularities.
    JEL: I20 I21 I28 J24
    Date: 2012–05
  4. By: Facundo Albornoz; Antonio Cabrales; Esther Hauk
    Abstract: Immigration is an important problem in many societies, and it has wide-ranging effects on the educational systems of host countries. There is a now a large empirical literature, but very little theoretical work on this topic. We introduce a model of family immigration in a frame- work where school quality and student outcomes are determined endogenously. This allows us to explain the selection of immigrants in terms of parental motivation and the policies which favor a positive selection. Also, we can study the effect of immigration on the school system and how school quality may self-reinforce immigrants' and natives' choices.
    Keywords: education, immigration, school resources, parental involvement, immigrant sorting
    JEL: I20 I21 I28 J24 J61
    Date: 2011–11
  5. By: Baumgarten Skogstrøm, Jens Fredrik (Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research,)
    Abstract: I present a theory on the relationship between educational choice and entrepreneurship in a labour market with asymmetric information. The model shows that, in a labour market where education is used as a signalling device, an imperfect relationship between productivity in education and in the labour market can lead to an equilibrium where a fraction of the high-ability individuals choose to quit school and become entrepreneurs. Using a comprehensive set of Norwegian register data, I find that this is prediction is confirmed empirically: Individuals combining low education with high ability have the highest entrepreneurship rates in the population.
    Keywords: Entrepreneurship; self-employment; education; ability
    JEL: J24 L26 M13
    Date: 2012–04–02
  6. By: Büchner Charlotte; Smits Wendy; Velden Rolf van der (ROA rm)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the relationship between cognitive skills, measured at age 12, andearnings of males and females at the age of 35, conditional on their attained educationallevel. Employing a large data set that combines a longitudinal school cohort survey withincome data from Dutch national tax files, our findings show that cognitive skills andspecifically math skills are rewarded on the labor market, but more for females thanfor males. The main factor driving this result is that cognitive skills appear to be betterpredictors of schooling outcomes for males than for females. Once males have achievedthe higher levels of education, they more often choose programs with high earningperspectives like economics and engineering, even if their level of math skills is relativelylow.
    Keywords: labour market entry and occupational careers;
    Date: 2012
  7. By: Giuseppe Bertola (Edhec Business School and CEPR); Paolo Sestito (Bank of Italy)
    Abstract: This paper reviews the evolution of educational institutions and outcomes over the 150 years since Italy's unification, and discusses their interaction with national and regional growth patterns. While initial educational conditions contributed to differentiate across regions the early industrial take off in the late 19th century, and formal education does not appear to have played a major role in the postwar economic boom, the slowdown of Italy's economy since the 1990s may be partly due to interactions between its traditionally low human capital intensity and new comparative advantage patterns, and to the deterioration since the 1970s of the educational system's organization.
    Keywords: Education systems, tracking, economic growth, regional convergence
    JEL: N30
    Date: 2011–10
  8. By: Dana Burde; Leigh L. Linden
    Abstract: We conduct a randomized evaluation of the effect of village-based schools on children’s academic performance using a sample of 31 villages and 1,490 children in rural northwestern Afghanistan. The program significantly increases enrollment and test scores among all children, eliminates the 21 percentage point gender disparity in enrollment, and dramatically reduces the disparity in test scores. The intervention increases formal school enrollment by 42 percentage points among all children and increases test scores by 0.51 standard deviations (1.2 standard deviations for children that enroll in school). While all students benefit, the effects accrue disproportionately to girls. Evidence suggests that the village-based schools provide a comparable education to traditional schools. Estimating the effects of distance on academic outcomes, children prove very sensitive: enrollment and test scores fall by 16 percentage points and 0.19 standard deviations per mile. Distance affects girls more than boys—girls’ enrollment falls by 6 percentage points more per mile (19 percentage points total per mile) and their test scores fall by an additional 0.09 standard deviations (0.24 standard deviations total per mile).
    JEL: I25 I28 O12 O22 O38
    Date: 2012–05
  9. By: Mihály Fazekas
    Abstract: This study provides a literature review on school funding formulas across OECD countries. It looks at three salient questions from a comparative perspective: i) What kind of school formula funding schemes exist and how are they used, particularly for promoting the needs of socially disadvantaged pupils?; ii) How do school formula funding regimes perform according to equity and efficiency standards?; iii) What are the unresolved issues? Formula funding of schools, as opposed to administrative discretion and bidding, relies on a mathematical formula containing a number of variables (e.g. number of pupils), each of which has attached to it a cash amount to determine school budgets. Across OECD countries there are four main groups of variables in such formulas: i) student number and grade level-based; ii) needs-based; iii) curriculum or educational programme-based and; iv) school characteristics-based. Sometimes output and outcome-related variables are also used. The performance of formula funding compared to alternative funding regimes is dependent on the details of the formula and on the wider education policy environment. Formula funding systems typically advance transparency and accountability at low administrative costs and in combination with matching complementary policy tools they can also contribute to equity and efficiency. Currently, there are several ongoing debates across OECD countries: First, there is an inherent tradeoff between transparency/simplicity and sensitivity to local conditions/complexity. Second, knowing how much educating to a given standard costs is problematic and subject to heated debates. The main reason for this is that the causal relationship between education costs and student performance is largely unknown and even the identified impacts appear to be relatively small. Third, even though resources are allocated according to need estimation, they might not be devoted to these needs. Fourth, it is still undecided whether the introduction of school formula funding regimes has changed actual school funding practice.<BR>Cette étude présente un examen de la littérature sur les formules de financement des établissements scolaires dans les pays de l’OCDE. Elle aborde trois questions qui méritent l’attention : i) Quels types de programmes de financement des écoles selon une formule préétablie existe-t-il et comment ceux-ci sont-ils utilisés, en particulier en ce qui concerne les besoins des élèves socialement défavorisés ? ; ii) Quels résultats ces mécanismes de financement des écoles fondé sur une formule préétablie permettent-ils d’obtenir eu égard aux normes d’équité et d’efficience ? ; iii) Quels sont les problèmes pendants ? Le financement des écoles selon une formule préétablie, par opposition au pouvoir discrétionnaire de l’administration et au système de soumissions, s’appuie sur une formule mathématique contenant plusieurs variables (par exemple le nombre d’élèves) dont chacune est attachée à une somme permettant de déterminer le budget des établissements. Dans les pays de l’OCDE, il existe quatre grands groupes de variables dans ce type de formule : i) le nombre d’élèves et les niveaux scolaires ; ii) les besoins ; iii) le programme d’études et le programme des activités éducatives et ; iv) les caractéristiques de l’établissement. Parfois, des variables liées aux résultats et aux réalisations sont également utilisées. L’efficacité du financement selon une formule préétablie par rapport à d’autres modes de financement dépend des détails de la formule retenue et de l’environnement général dans lequel opère la politique de l’éducation. Ces systèmes de financement ont en général pour effet de promouvoir la transparence et la responsabilisation pour un coût administratif faible et, associés à des outils complémentaires bien adaptés, ils peuvent aussi favoriser l’équité et l’efficience. A l’heure actuelle, plusieurs débats sont en cours dans les pays de l’OCDE. Premièrement, il y a un arbitrage à faire systématiquement entre, d’une part, la transparence et la simplicité et, d’autre part, la prise en compte des conditions et de la complexité au niveau local. Deuxièmement, la question de savoir à combien revient un enseignement d’un niveau de qualité donné est délicate et fait l’objet de vifs débats. La principale raison en est que la relation causale entre le coût de l’éducation et les résultats obtenus par les élèves est en grande partie inconnue et que les effets identifiés semblent être relativement peu importants. Troisièmement, même si des ressources sont allouées sur la base d’une estimation des besoins, il se peut qu’elles ne soient pas employées à la satisfaction de ces besoins. Quatrièmement, on ne sait pas encore si l’introduction de mécanismes de financement des écoles fondé sur une formule préétablie a changé les pratiques de financement des établissements.
    Date: 2012–05–03
  10. By: Jennifer Hunt
    Abstract: Using a state panel based on census data from 1940-2010, I examine the impact of immigration on the high school completion of natives in the United States. Immigrant children could compete for schooling resources with native children, lowering the return to native education and discouraging native high school completion. Conversely, native children might be encouraged to complete high school in order to avoid competing with immigrant high-school dropouts in the labor market. I find evidence that both channels are operative and that the net effect is positive, particularly for native-born blacks, though not for native-born Hispanics. An increase of one percentage point in the share of immigrants in the population aged 11-64 increases the probability that natives aged 11-17 eventually complete 12 years of schooling by 0.3 percentage points, and increases the probability for native-born blacks by 0.4 percentage points. I account for the endogeneity of immigrant flows by using instruments based on 1940 settlement patterns.
    JEL: J15
    Date: 2012–05
  11. By: Nils Kornder (University of Maastricht); Jaap Dronkers (University of Maastricht)
    Abstract: As a follow-up of earlier analyses of the educational performance of all pupils with a migration background with Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) waves 2003 and 2006, we analyze the differences between the educational performance of 15-year old daughters and sons of migrants from specific regions of origin countries living in different destination countries. We use the newest PISA 2009 wave. Instead of analyzing only Western countries as destination countries, we analyze the educational performance of 16,612 daughters and 16,804 sons of migrants in destination countries across Asia, Europe, Latin America, and Oceania. We distinguish 62 origin countries and 12 origin areas in 30 destination countries. We test three hypotheses: 1) The daughters of migrants from poorer, more traditional regions perform much better in reading than comparable sons of migrants from the same origin regions, while the daughters of migrants from more affluent and liberal regions perform slightly better in reading than comparable sons of migrants from the same regions. 2) Individual socioeconomic background has a stronger effect on the educational performance of daughters of migrants than on the performance of sons of migrants. 3) The performance of female native pupils has a higher influence on the performance of migrant daughters than the performance of male native pupils has on the performance of migrant sons. The first hypothesis can only partly be accepted. Female migrant pupils have both higher reading and math scores than comparable male migrant pupils, and these gender differences among migrant pupils are larger than among comparable native pupils. The additional variation in educational performance by region of origin is, however, not clearly related to the poverty or traditionalism of regions. Neither the second nor the third hypothesis can be accepted, given our results.
    Date: 2012–05
  12. By: Giorgio Brunello; Maria De Paola; Giovanna Labartino
    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.
    Date: 2012–04
  13. By: Christian Ben Lakhdar (LEM - Lille - Economie et Management - CNRS : UMR8179 - Université Lille 1 - Sciences et Technologies - Fédération Universitaire et Polytechnique de Lille, Université Catholique de Lille - Université Catholique de Lille); Grégoire Cauchie (LEM - Lille - Economie et Management - CNRS : UMR8179 - Université Lille 1 - Sciences et Technologies - Fédération Universitaire et Polytechnique de Lille, Université Catholique de Lille - Université Catholique de Lille); Nicolas Gérard Vaillant (LEM - Lille - Economie et Management - CNRS : UMR8179 - Université Lille 1 - Sciences et Technologies - Fédération Universitaire et Polytechnique de Lille, Université Catholique de Lille - Université Catholique de Lille); François-Charles Wolff (LEMNA - Laboratoire d'économie et de management de Nantes Atlantique - Université de Nantes : EA4272, INED - Institut National d'Etudes Démographiques Paris - INED)
    Abstract: In this paper, we study the smoking behavior of students aged from 18 to 25 using four cross-section data sets collected in France from 1997 to 2006. We focus on the role played by student income and parental resources. We find that both the probability of smoking and the number of cigarettes smoked are positively correlated to family resources. Among students, only wages earned and transfers received from parents increase smoking participation. However, sensitivity to income remains weak since a rise of 1% in income of either the students or their parents leads to an increase in smoking prevalence of about 0.15-0.20%.
    Keywords: cigarette smoking ; students ; income effects
    Date: 2012–05–04
  14. By: Jellal , Mohamed; Bouzahzah, Mohamed
    Abstract: This paper highlights formally the interaction existing between the quality of institutional governance, the education sector and economic growth. More fundamentally, we show how the quality of institutional governance matters in giving directly the appropriate incentives for human capital accumulation, which positively impact the profile of economic growth.
    Keywords: Institutions; Governance; Education; Economic Growth
    JEL: O43 I21
    Date: 2012
  15. By: Chiara MUSSIDA (Department of Economics and Social Sciences, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Piacenza, Italy); Matteo PICCHIO (Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO); Sherppa, Ghent University; Department of Economics, CentER,Tilburg University; IZA, Bonn)
    Abstract: This paper studies the gender wage gap by educational attainment in Italy using the 1994–2001 ECHP data. We estimate wage distributions in the presence of covariates and sample selection separately for highly and low educated men and women. Then, we decompose the gender wage gap across all the wage distribution and isolate the part due to gender differences in the remunerations of the similar characteristics. We find that women are penalized especially if low educated. When we control for sample selection induced by unobservables, the penalties for low educated women become even larger, above all at the bottom of the wage distribution.
    Keywords: gender wage gap, education, counterfactual distributions, decompositions, hazard function
    JEL: C21 C41 J16 J31 J71
    Date: 2012–04–24
  16. By: Simone Schüller
    Abstract: A lack of cultural integration is often blamed for hindering immigrant families' economic progression. This paper is a first attempt to explore whether immigrant parents' ethnic identity affects the next generation's human capital accumulation in the host country. Empirical results based on data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) indicate that maternal majority as well as paternal minority identity are positively related to the educational attainment of second-generation youth - even controlling for differences in ethnicity, family background and years-since-migration. Additional tests show that the effect of maternal majority identity can be explained by mothers' German language proficiency, while the beneficial effect of fathers' minority identity is not related to language skills and thus likely to stem from paternal minority identity per se.
    Keywords: Ethnic Identity, Second-Generation Immigrants, Education
    JEL: I21 J15 J16
    Date: 2012
  17. By: Anthony Heath; Elina Kilpi-Jakonen
    Abstract: While a number of single-country studies have been done to explore whether or not there is a “critical age” at which the arrival in a new country becomes a steep disadvantage to the immigrant student, this study aims to determine whether the steepness of the age-at-arrival/test score profile varies across origin or destination countries. As expected, the later the arrival, the greater the penalty. However results vary according to several factors, including language differences and whether the country of origin had higher or lower educational standards. Evidence shows the importance of helping young migrants with language difficulties, as well as with the subsequent adverse effects of these difficulties.<BR>Tandis qu’un certain nombre d’études nationales ont été réalisées afin de déterminer s’il existe ou non un « âge critique » auquel l’arrivée dans un nouveau pays constitue un désavantage important pour les élèves immigrés, la présente étude tente d’analyser si le profil âge d’arrivée/résultats à l’évaluation varie en fonction du pays d’origine et du pays d’accueil. Comme escompté, plus l’arrivée est tardive, plus le désavantage est important. Les résultats varient cependant en fonction de plusieurs facteurs, notamment des différences linguistiques et du niveau (supérieur ou inférieur) des normes éducatives du pays d’origine. Les données recueillies montrent l’importance d’aider les jeunes migrants à faire face aux difficultés linguistiques auxquelles ils sont confrontés ainsi qu’aux effets négatifs qui peuvent en résulter.
    Date: 2012–05–02

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