nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2015‒02‒16
seventeen papers chosen by
João Carlos Correia Leitão
Universidade da Beira Interior

  1. Student assessment and grade retention: evidence from a natural experiment By Kimura, Marlies; Ochsen, Carsten
  2. School Management and Sexual Behavior of Teenagers By Andrea Atencio; Juan Gallego; Darío Maldonado
  3. Does the teacher beat the test? The additional value of teacher assessment in predicting student ability By Bas ter Weel; Eva Feron en Trudie Schils (Department of Economics; Maastricht University)
  4. Does higher learning intensity affect student well-being? Evidence from the National Educational Panel Study By Quis, Johanna Sophie
  5. Education Promoted Secularization By Nagler, Markus; Becker, Sascha O.; Woessmann, Ludger
  6. Does Improved Local Supply of Schooling Enhance Intergenerational Mobility in Education? Evidence from Jordan By Assaad, Ragui; Saleh, Mohamed
  7. Education Policy, Occupation-Mismatch and the Skill Premium By Francesc Obiols-Homs; Virginia Sánchez-Marcos
  8. On The Origins of Gender Human Capital Gaps: Short and Long Term Consequences of Teachers’ Stereotypical Biases By Victor Lavy; Edith Sand
  9. The Dutch vocational education and training system By Verhagen A.M.C.
  10. Do wage expectations influence the decision to enroll in nursing college? By Schweri, Juerg; Hartog, Joop
  11. The Economic Returns to Graduating with Honors - Evidence from Law Graduates By Schumann, Mathias; Freier, Ronny; Siedler, Thomas
  12. Is university sports an advertisement in the higher education market? An analysis of the Hakone long-distance relay road race in Japan By Eiji Yamamura
  13. A Question of Degree: The Effects of Degree Class on Labor Market Outcomes By Feng, Andy; Graetz, Georg
  14. Granting Birthright Citizenship - A Door Opener for Immigrant Children's Educational Participation and Success? By Saurer, Judith; Felfe, Christina
  15. Emergence and evolution of learning gaps across countries: Linked panel evidence from Ethiopia, India, Peru and Vietnam By Abhijeet Singh
  16. Roots of Financial Literacy By Grohmann, Antonia; Kouwenberg, Roy; Menkhoff, Lukas
  17. The impact of one of the most highly cited university patents: formalisation and localization By Azagra-Caro,Joaquín M.; Barberá-Tomás,David; Edwards-Schachter,Mónica

  1. By: Kimura, Marlies; Ochsen, Carsten
    Abstract: In Germany and many other countries, students are tracked into various secondary school types. This paper studies whether parents or teachers assess students potential educational performance more adequately. Educational attainment is measured by grade retention rates. We take advantage of a reform in the German state of North Rhine- Westphalia (NRW) in 2006. The reform replaced parents choice about their children s secondary school type by a binding teacher recommendation. Our data comprises class-level information on all public secondary schools in the state. We find that binding teacher recommendations cause less grade retentions. The effect is mainly driven by students from better situated districts. This finding may capture that with free parental choice, overambitious parents tend to select too demanding tracks for their children.
    JEL: I20 I28 I21
    Date: 2014
  2. By: Andrea Atencio; Juan Gallego; Darío Maldonado
    Abstract: Abstract: This paper asks whether school based management may help reducing risky sexual behavior of teenagers. For this purpose we use student level data from Bogota to identify students from Concession School (CS), who are enrolled in public education system with a more school management autonomy at school level, and to compare them with those students at the traditional public education system. We use propensity score matching methods to have a comparable sample between pupils at CS and traditional schools. Our results show that on average the behavior of students from CS do not have a sexual behavior that diers from those in traditional public schools except for boys in CS who have a lower probability of being sexual active. However, there are important dierences when heterogeneity is considered. For example we nd that CS where girls per boys ratio is higher have lower teenage pregnancy rates than public schools with also high girls per boys ratios. We also nd that teachers' human capital, teacher-pupil ratio or whether school oers sexual education are also related to statistically signicant dierences between CS and traditional public schools.
    Keywords: Sexual Behavior, School Management, Concession Schools, Bogota
    JEL: H51 I28 J13 O15
    Date: 2015–01–16
  3. By: Bas ter Weel; Eva Feron en Trudie Schils (Department of Economics; Maastricht University)
    Abstract: This research investigates to what extent subjective teacher assessment of children’s ability adds to the use of test scores in the explanation of children’s outcomes in the transition from elementary to secondary school. This in terms of initial track allocation, track switching in the first three years of secondary education and subsequent test scores. We apply micro-data from the Netherlands about cognitive test scores and teacher assessment in elementary schools and about track placement, track switching and test scores in secondary schools. Our estimates suggest that subjective teacher assessment is about twice as important as the elementary school cognitive test scores for initial track placement in secondary school. In addition, teacher assessment is more predictive of track allocation in 9th grade compared to cognitive test scores. Next, children who switch tracks are more likely to be placed in tracks based on test scores. Also, test scores in 9th grade are predicted by subjective teacher assessment, not by test scores in sixth grade. Finally, a back-of-the-envelope calculation shows that switching could be reduced by at least ten percent if children would have been allocated according to the teacher’s assessment.
    JEL: I21 I28 J24
    Date: 2015–01
  4. By: Quis, Johanna Sophie
    Abstract: Starting in 2004/2005, the German state Baden-Wurttemberg reduced academic track duration from nine to eight years, leaving cumulative instruction time mostly unchanged. I use this change in schooling policy to identify the effect of schooling intensity on student well-being in life and school, perceived stress, mental health indicators and self-efficacy. Using rich data from the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS), estimates show higher strains for girls in terms of stress and mental health than for boys. Unexpectedly, male subjective general well-being slightly increases with the reform. Student well-being in school and self-efficacy remain mostly unchanged.
    Keywords: self-efficacy,high school reform,subjective well-being,mental health,stress,NEPS
    JEL: I12 I28 I21 J24
    Date: 2015
  5. By: Nagler, Markus; Becker, Sascha O.; Woessmann, Ludger
    Abstract: Why did substantial parts of Europe abandon the institutionalized churches around 1900? Empirical studies using modern data mostly contradict the traditional view that education was a leading source of the seismic social phenomenon of secularization. We construct a unique panel dataset of advanced-school enrollment and Protestant church attendance in German cities between 1890 and 1930. Our cross-sectional estimates replicate a positive association. By contrast, in panel models where fixed effects account for time-invariant unobserved heterogeneity, education but not income or urbanization is negatively related to church attendance. In panel models with lagged explanatory variables, educational expansion precedes reduced church attendance.
    JEL: Z12 N33 I20
    Date: 2014
  6. By: Assaad, Ragui; Saleh, Mohamed
    Abstract: This paper examines the effect of increased local supply of schooling on intergenerational mobility in education in Jordan. We use a unique data set that links individual data on own schooling and parents’ schooling for adults, from a household survey, with the annual supply of schools in the sub-district of birth, from a school census. We identify the effect by exploiting the variation in the supply of basic and secondary public schools across cohorts and sub-districts of birth in Jordan, controlling for both cohort and sub-district of birth fixed effects. School availability is determined based on the number of sex-appropriate public schools in the individual’s sub-district of birth at the time the individual was ready to start that schooling stage. Our findings show that the local availability of basic public schools does in fact increase intergenerational mobility in education. For instance, an increase in the supply of basic public schools of one school per 1,000 people reduces the father-son and mother-son associations of schooling by 10 percent and the father-daughter and mother-daughter associations by nearly 30 percent. However, an increase in the local supply of secondary public schools does not seem to have a similar effect on intergenerational mobility in education.
    Keywords: Supply of schooling, education, intergenerational mobility, inequality of opportunity, Middle East
    JEL: I24 I28
    Date: 2015–01
  7. By: Francesc Obiols-Homs; Virginia Sánchez-Marcos
    Abstract: A relatively low tertiary education wage premium and a large occupational mismatch are two salient features of the Spanish labor market that distinguish it with respect to the labor markets in other developed countries. In this paper we provide an equilibrium model of the labor market with frictions in which workers are heterogeneous in terms of ability and education. We specifically model an education policy as delivering either a particular selection of individuals into the tertiary education system or a higher ability of individuals, or both. Our model economy is calibrated to mimic several of the Spanish labor market statistics together with key aspects of the achievement levels from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) and the Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIIAC). We then explore the implications of alternative education policies on mismatch and tertiary education wage premium. We find that under an education policy able to produce ability levels of tertiary educated workers comparable to the average of the OECD countries a 40% lower fraction of mismatched workers and a 10% higher tertiary education wage premium would be observed in Spain.
    Keywords: occupational-mismatch, tertiary education wage premium, ability
    JEL: J21 J24
    Date: 2015–01
  8. By: Victor Lavy; Edith Sand
    Abstract: In this paper, we estimate the effect of primary school teachers’ gender biases on boys’ and girls’ academic achievements during middle and high school and on the choice of advanced level courses in math and sciences during high school. For identification, we rely on the random assignments of teachers and students to classes in primary schools. Our results suggest that teachers’ biases favoring boys have an asymmetric effect by gender— positive effect on boys’ achievements and negative effect on girls’. Such gender biases also impact students’ enrollment in advanced level math courses in high school—boys positively and girls negatively. These results suggest that teachers’ biased behavior at early stage of schooling have long run implications for occupational choices and earnings at adulthood, because enrollment in advanced courses in math and science in high school is a prerequisite for post-secondary schooling in engineering, computer science and so on. This impact is heterogeneous, being larger for children from families where the father is more educated than the mother and larger on girls from low socioeconomic background.
    JEL: J16 J24
    Date: 2015–01
  9. By: Verhagen A.M.C. (ROA)
    Abstract: The Dutch educational system is highly stratified from secondary education onwards3, and this also applies to MBO. Each MBO course can be followed in two different learning pathways, called the vocationally educating learning pathway beroepsopleidende leerweg BOL and the vocationally guiding learning pathway beroepsbegeleidende leerweg BBL.
    Date: 2014
  10. By: Schweri, Juerg; Hartog, Joop
    Abstract: Given a severe nurse shortage in Switzerland, this paper investigates Swiss students choice for nursing college education and the impact of their ex ante wage expectations on college enrolment. The analysis contributes to a small developing literature that uses subjective wage expectation data to predict education choice. We surveyed a full cohort of healthcare trainees on upper-secondary level in their third year of training. The main result is that trainees who expected a lower starting wage when working as healthcare employee were more likely to enroll in a nursing college later on. This result suggests a role for policies that increase returns from studying nursing to attract students to nursing. In addition, the result confirms that subjective wage expectation data is useful in modeling individual choice.
    JEL: I21 I11 J24
    Date: 2014
  11. By: Schumann, Mathias; Freier, Ronny; Siedler, Thomas
    Abstract: This paper studies the causal effects of graduating from university with an honors degree on subsequent labor market outcomes. While a rich body of literature has focused on estimating returns to human capital, few studies have analyzed returns at the very top of the education distribution. We highlight the importance of honors degrees for future labor market success in the context of German law graduates. Using a difference-in-differences research design combined with entropy balancing, we find that students of law who passed the state bar exam with an honors degree receive a significant earnings premium (about 14 percent), are more likely to work in public service (about 16 percentage points), are less likely to be self-employed (seven percentage points) and are more often engaged in Ph.D. studies (about 20 percentage points).
    JEL: J01 J31 J44
    Date: 2014
  12. By: Eiji Yamamura
    Abstract: A university long-distance relay road race, the Hakone Ekiden, is widely acknowledged as the most popular New Yearfs sporting event in Japan. The event is held immediately prior to the university application period in Japan. Using Japanese panel data for 2001-2014, this study examined how the Hakone Ekiden race influences the behavior of students preparing for university entrance examinations. The major finding is that the number of applicants for a university is 3% larger when the university participated in the race than when it did not. Further, universities finishing in the top three in the race saw a 4% increase in the number of applicants compared with other universities that participated in the race. A 1% increase in the television viewing rate for the race led to a 1% increase in the number of applicants for the universities participating in the race. It follows that advertising universities on television would be effective in the university market.
    Date: 2015–01
  13. By: Feng, Andy (Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry); Graetz, Georg (Uppsala University)
    Abstract: How does measured performance at university affect labor market outcomes? We show that degree class – a coarse measure of student performance used in the UK – causally affects graduates' industry and hence expected wages. To control for unobserved ability, we employ a regression discontinuity design that utilizes rules governing the award of degrees. A First Class (Upper Second) increases the probability of working in a high-wage industry by thirteen (eight) percentage points, and leads to three (seven) percent higher expected wages. The results point to the importance of statistical discrimination, heuristic decision making, and luck in the labor market.
    Keywords: high skill wage inequality, regression discontinuity design, statistical discrimination
    JEL: C26 I24 J24 J31
    Date: 2015–01
  14. By: Saurer, Judith; Felfe, Christina
    Abstract: Does granting citizenship at birth help immigrant children to integrate in the host country's educational system and thus, to promote their educational success? Our identification strategy is based on a reform of the German naturalization law in 2000. We exploit this natural experiment and use a difference-in-difference design that compares children born shortly before and after the reform in years of policy change and years where no policy change took place. Our empirical analysis relies on two comprehensive datasets, administrative data from school entry examinations and the German Micro Census, Europe's largest household survey. We find positive effects on immigrant children's participation in non-mandatory preschool (by 3.2 percentage points) and referral to upper secondary school (by 7.8 percentage points).
    JEL: J15 J24 I21
    Date: 2014
  15. By: Abhijeet Singh
    Abstract: There are substantial learning gaps across countries on standardized international assessments.  In this paper, I use unique child-level panel data from Ethiopia, India, Peru and Vietnam with identical tests administered across these countries to children at 5, 8, 12 and 15 years of age to ask at what ages do gaps between different populations emerge, how they increase or decline over time, and what the proximate determinants of this divergence are.  I document that a clear pattern of stochastic dominance is evident at the age of 5 years, prior to school enrolment, with children in Vietnam at the upper end, children in Ethiopia at the lower, and with Peru and India in between.  Differences between country samples grow in magnitude at later ages, preserving the country rankings noted at 5 years of age over the entire age range studied.  This divergence is only partly explained by home investments and child-specific endowments in a value-added production function approach.  The divergence in achievement between Vietnam and the other countries at primary school age is largely explained by the differential productivity of a year of schooling.  These findings are confirmed also using an IV approach, using discontinuities in grade competion arising between children born in adjacent months due to country-specific enrolment guidelines.
    Date: 2014–08–08
  16. By: Grohmann, Antonia; Kouwenberg, Roy; Menkhoff, Lukas
    Abstract: Our study aims to uncover the roots of financial literacy. Better financial literacy predicts more informed savings and borrowing decisions in our sample, covering the urban middle-class in an emerging economy. We then test education at school, family background, parental teaching, and childhood experiences with money as potential determinants of financial literacy. In addition to risk tolerance and having basic numeracy skills, we find that family variables matter most, in particular better education of the mother and encouragement to save by parents. Our findings suggest that regular formal education may play only a limited role in shaping financial literacy
    JEL: D14 D20 O16
    Date: 2014
  17. By: Azagra-Caro,Joaquín M.; Barberá-Tomás,David; Edwards-Schachter,Mónica
    Abstract: This paper examines the underlying mechanisms of knowledge diffusion and interrelationships between formal and informal channels attending to the localisation of spillovers between university and industry. With this aim we present a historical in-depth case study centred in one of the most highly cited university patents, developing and applying a theoretical approach that combines formalisation and localisation analytical dimensions. Our findings show how knowledge diffused through channels with different degrees of formalization (patent licenses, “pure” spillovers and consultancy contracts with the inventors). The case also evidences the pervasive delocalization of several knowledge diffusion channels and the complexity of achieving local impact, even at a privileged environment like California. The crucial diffusion mechanism channel stemmed from bidirectional knowledge flows between the university and a non-regional company, which provided the university with the specific fabrication capabilities needed to create an open-lab programme, which ultimately achieved local impact.
    Keywords: Knowledge flows, Academic patenting, Technology transfer, Geographic R&D spillovers
    JEL: O31 O34
    Date: 2015–01–30

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