nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2013‒09‒06
thirteen papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
University of Beira Interior and Technical University of Lisbon

  1. Student perceptions on using blogs for reflective learning in higher educational contexts By Irshad Ali; Kevin Byard
  2. Matched panel data estimates of the impact of Teach First on school and departmental performance By Rebecca Allen; Jay Allnutt
  3. GraduatesÕ emotional competency: aligning academic programs, firmsÕ requirements and studentsÕ profiles By Fabrizio Gerli; Sara Bonesso; Claudio Pizzi; Mariachiara Barzotto
  4. An Analysis of the Impact of Socioeconomic Disadvantage and School Quality on the Probability of School Dropout By Mahuteau, Stéphane; Mavromaras, Kostas G.
  5. Where does Philippine education go? : the "K to 12" program and reform of Philippine basic education By Okabe, Masayoshi
  6. Child Labor and Learning By Emerson, Patrick M.; Ponczek, Vladimir; Portela Souza, André
  7. Could Learning Strategies Reduce the Performance Gap Between Advantaged and Disadvantaged Students? By OECD
  8. Modeling Income Dynamics for Public Policy Design: An Application to Income Contingent Student Loans By Higgins, Tim; Sinning, Mathias
  9. Understanding entrepreneurial intentions of students in agriculture and related sciences By Leonidas A. Zampetakis; Afroditi Anagnosti; Stelios Rozakis
  10. "For the love or the Republic" Education, Secularism, and Empowerment By Selim Gulesci; Erik Meyersson
  11. How Can Teacher Feedback Be Used to Improve The Classroom Disciplinary Climate? By OECD
  12. Education, income, and the distribution of happiness By Owen, Ann; Phillips, Anne
  13. Efficiency of College Education in the Labor Market of the United States By William T. Alpert; Alexander Vaninsky

  1. By: Irshad Ali (Department of Economics, Faculty of Business and Law, Auckland University of Technology); Kevin Byard (Department of Economics, Faculty of Business and Law, Auckland University of Technology)
    Abstract: Increasingly, blogs are being used by educators in higher education for teaching and learning as they have numerous pedagogical benefits. This study describes and analyses the use of blogs as a private journal or e-portfolio for an assessment in a first year bachelor of business programme. Three hundred and fifty students answered an online questionnaire exploring their perceptions of blogs as an assessment tool, in particular ease of use and impact on learning and skills development. Students found numerous benefits of using blogs such as ease of submitting work, increased ownership of learning, and being able to check and improve their work on a regular basis. They also reported that the use of blogs provided flexibility in completing tasks, helped get feedback from lecturers, and increased the quality and quantity of their work. However, there was a lack of consensus on whether blog use improved writing ability of students, increased dialogue between students and lecturers or increased student interest in learning. The challenge for those contemplating using blogs for similar purposes is to ensure that students are provided with sufficient instructions, and constructive, timely feedback.
    Keywords: blogs, private journal, higher education
  2. By: Rebecca Allen (Institute of Education, University of London); Jay Allnutt (Teach First, London)
    Abstract: In this paper we evaluate whether the placement of Teach First’s carefully selected, yet inexperienced new teachers into deprived secondary schools in England has altered the educational outcomes of pupils at the age of 16. Our difference-in-difference panel estimation approach matches schools participating early on in the scheme to those within the same region. We find the programme has not been damaging to schools who joined and most likely produced school-wide gains in GCSE results in the order of 5% of a pupil standard deviation or around one grade in one of the pupil’s best eight subjects. We estimate pupil point-in-time fixed effect models to identify core subject departmental gains of over 5% of a subject grade resulting from placing a Teach First participant in a teaching team of six teachers.
    Keywords: teacher preparation; school performance; teacher effectiveness
    JEL: I20 I21 C23
    Date: 2013–09–03
  3. By: Fabrizio Gerli (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice); Sara Bonesso (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice); Claudio Pizzi (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice); Mariachiara Barzotto (Dept. of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venice)
    Abstract: This study explores the still under-investigated phenomenon of the development of behavioral competencies in higher education settings. We carried out a study on a sample of graduate students enrolled in different disciplinary academic programs in a public University located in northern Italy. We analyzed their emotional, social and cognitive competencies (by adopting a research method that includes a multi-rater approach), comparing them with those expected by a sample of recruiting companies and with those developed by the teachers. Moreover, this study provides preliminary evidence on the impact of a set of characteristics related to the academic learning environment (such as the teaching methods) on the studentsÕ competency profile, correlating these variables with single competencies and clusters.
    Keywords: Emotional and social competencies, graduate students, higher education, behavioral competency, learning environment, competency development.
    JEL: I23 J24 M12 M51 M53
    Date: 2013–08
  4. By: Mahuteau, Stéphane (NILS, Flinders University); Mavromaras, Kostas G. (NILS, Flinders University)
    Abstract: PISA scores are an internationally established indicator of student and school performance. This paper builds on the evidence that better PISA scores are known to be associated with better later life outcomes. It uses the Australian PISA micro-level data in combination with its longitudinal continuation in the LSAY data, to measure the degree to which individual PISA scores are associated with individual early school dropouts. It distinguishes between student and school factors and estimates a model of the propensity to drop out from school between ages 15 and 18. The paper finds that PISA scores are a good predictor of early dropout, and that individual and social disadvantage plays a crucial role in this relationship both directly and indirectly.
    Keywords: PISA, socioeconomic disadvantage, school dropout, student outcomes, multilevel modelling
    JEL: I24 I21
    Date: 2013–08
  5. By: Okabe, Masayoshi
    Abstract: In 2012 the Philippines launched its "K to 12" Program, a comprehensive reform of its basic education. Through this reform, the Philippines is catching up with global standards in secondary education and is attaching a high value to kindergarten. The structure, curricula, and philosophy of the education system are undergoing reform and improvement. The key points of the new policy are "preparation" for higher education, "eligibility" for entering domestic and overseas higher educational institutions, and immediate "employability" on graduating, all leading toward a "holistically developed Filipino". This policy appears admirable and timely, but it faces some pedagogical and socioeconomic problems. The author wants to point out in particular that the policy needs to address gender problems and should be combined with demand-side approaches in order to promote poverty alleviation and human development in the Philippines.
    Keywords: Philippines, Educational policy, Secondary education, Social development, Education reform, Human development, Poverty
    JEL: I21 I28 I31 O15
    Date: 2013–08
  6. By: Emerson, Patrick M. (Oregon State University); Ponczek, Vladimir (Sao Paulo School of Economics); Portela Souza, André (Sao Paulo School of Economics)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of working while in school on learning outcomes through the use of a unique micro panel dataset of students in the São Paulo municipal school system. The potential endogeneity of working decisions and learning outcomes is addressed through the use of a difference-in-difference estimator and it is shown that the results are robust. A negative and significant effect of working on learning outcomes in both math and Portuguese is found. The effects of child work from the benchmark regressions range from 3% to 8% of a standard deviation decline in test score which represents a loss of about a quarter to a half of a year of learning on average. Additionally, it is found that this effect is likely due to the interference of work with the time kids can devote to school and school work.
    Keywords: child labor, learning, proficiency, education
    JEL: J13 I21
    Date: 2013–08
  7. By: OECD
    Abstract: <ul> <li>Students who know how to summarise information tend to perform better in reading. </li> <li>If disadvantaged students used effective learning strategies to the same extent as students from more advantaged backgrounds do, the performance gap between the two groups would be almost 20% narrower. </li></ul>
    Date: 2013–06
  8. By: Higgins, Tim (Australian National University); Sinning, Mathias (Australian National University)
    Abstract: This paper studies the importance of dynamic earnings modeling for the design of income contingent student loans (ICLs). ICLs have been shown to be theoretically optimal in terms of efficiency in the presence of risk aversion, adverse selection and moral hazard, and have attractive equity properties. Recognition of their benefits has led to their adoption for tertiary education tuition fees in countries including Australia, New Zealand, and the UK. Since the design of ICLs relies on the prediction of the underlying costs, we explore the extent to which the complexity of earnings modeling affects the estimation of loan subsidies. The use of Australian data allows us to compare our simulated debt repayments to actual repayments under the Australian Higher Education Contribution Scheme (HECS). Our findings reveal that the complexity of earnings modeling has considerable implications for the calculation of loan subsidies.
    Keywords: educational finance, dynamic stochastic modeling, panel data, income contingent loans
    JEL: H81 I22 C15
    Date: 2013–08
  9. By: Leonidas A. Zampetakis (1 Department of Production Engineering & Management Technical University of Crete, 73100, Chania, Crete, GR); Afroditi Anagnosti (3 Innovation & Entrepreneurship Unit, Agricultural University of Athens, Iera Odos 75, 11855 Athens, GR); Stelios Rozakis (Department of Agricultural Economics & Rural Development, Agricultural University of Athens)
    Abstract: There is a growing body of literature arguing that an individual's intention to start an enterprise is a strong predictor of individual entrepreneurial action. The present research uses Ajzen’s (1991) theory of planned behavior (TPB) to investigate entrepreneurial intent of agricultural students. The TPB offers a parsimonious explanation of purposeful behavior and has been used with success in previous research studies to explain the entrepreneurial intent of business and engineering students. However, research studies that examine the application of the theory to students from agricultural universities are scarce. In the present research, we empirically examine the TPB using data from 65 students from the Agricultural University of Athens, Greece. Results, using path analysis, support previous studies that used TPB to predict entrepreneurial intentions, which suggest that students’ attitudes towards entrepreneurship are related to their intention (INT) to start a business. In addition perceived behavioral control (PBC) is a strong predictor of INT. As far the role of subjective norm (SN) is concerned, results of the present study suggest that it has a small negative, and statistically significant effect. Furthermore, in line with recent theoretical and empirical studies about the potential role of emotions in entrepreneurship, we investigated the role of anticipated emotional ambivalence in students’ entrepreneurial intent. Results suggest that anticipated emotional ambivalence from nascent entrepreneurship (that is, students’ future oriented emotions relating to the expectancy of feeling both positive and negative affect) relates negatively to perceived behavioral control.
    Keywords: Agricultural university, entrepreneurship education, entrepreneurial intentions
    JEL: A22 C39
    Date: 2013
  10. By: Selim Gulesci; Erik Meyersson
    Abstract: We exploit a change in compulsory schooling laws in Turkey to estimate the causal effects of education on religiosity and women's socio-economic status. A new law, implemented in 1998 bound individuals born after a specific date to 8 years of schooling while those born earlier could drop out after 5 years. This allows the implementation of a Regression Discontinuity (RD) Design and the estimation of meaningful causal estimates of schooling. Using the 2008 Turkish Demographic Health Survey, we show that the reform resulted in a one-year increase in years of schooling among women on average, although it did not increase schooling among men. Over a period of ten years, this education increase resulted in women having lower religiosity, greater decision rights over marriage and fertility, and higher household wealth. We find that a muted average RD effect on labor force participation shrouds heterogenous effects depending on socioeconomic background; women from more socially conservative backgrounds tend to obser ve no increase in labor force participation whereas women from less conservative backgrounds experience a large increase. Education thus empowers women across a wide spectrum of a Muslim society, yet faces limits in allowing women in the conservative communities from realizing their full potential through the labor market. JEL Classification: J16, I25, Z12
    Date: 2013
  11. By: OECD
    Abstract: <ul> <li>Teachers – especially new ones – report that one of their greatest areas of need relates to improving classroom disciplinary climate. </li> <li>Many teachers are not provided feedback on their classroom disciplinary climate through formal or informal appraisals. </li> <li>Feedback on classroom disciplinary climate can help to improve both teacher self-efficacy and the overall quality of the classroom learning environment. </li></ul>
    Date: 2013–03
  12. By: Owen, Ann; Phillips, Anne
    Abstract: We study happiness inequality in the United States using data from the 2005 to 2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). We aggregate individual level data to the state level and study how the average life satisfaction of various income, education, and life satisfaction groups changes with the average life satisfaction of the state. We find that the life satisfaction of the least happy does not increase in equal proportion with the average happiness of society, suggesting that increasing happiness levels are likely to lead to greater happiness inequality. However, the life satisfaction of the poorest and least educated does increase in equal proportions with average life satisfaction. Taken together, these results indicate that directed policies aimed at increasing the income of the poor or education levels of the least educated could result in less inequality in the distribution of welfare.
    Keywords: happiness inequality; happiness of poor; happiness of educated
    JEL: D3 I0 I24
    Date: 2013–07
  13. By: William T. Alpert (University of Connecticut); Alexander Vaninsky (Hostos Community College)
    Abstract: The paper discusses the worthiness of the resources allocated for college education from the point of view of their value in the labor market. We use Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) to weigh the share of GDP spent on a college education and weighted time of labor force college study against productivity, employment rate, and labor force participation. Based on the data of the United States labor market for the period of 1980 - 2010, we received that the efficiency of a college education had no statistically significant tendency to increase or decrease over the period of the research but was closely related to the business cycles with a lag of one year. JEL Classification:
    Keywords: College education; Efficiency; Labor force productivity; Employment rate; Labor force participation; Data Envelopment Analysis
    Date: 2013–08

This nep-edu issue is ©2013 by Joao Carlos Correia Leitao. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.