nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2015‒10‒17
sixteen papers chosen by
João Carlos Correia Leitão
Universidade da Beira Interior

  1. The causal effects of increased learning intensity on student achievement: Evidence from a natural experiment By Andrietti, Vincenzo
  2. How confident are students in their ability to solve mathematics problems? By OECD
  3. Bilingual Schooling and Earnings: Evidence from a Language-in-Education Reform By Lorenzo Cappellari; Antonio Di Paolo
  4. An Experimental Evaluation of a Proactive Pastoral Care Initiative Within An Introductory University Course By Michael P. Cameron; Sialupapu Siameja
  5. ICT and Education: Evidence from Student Home Addresses By Benjamin Faber; Rosa Sanchis-Guarner; Felix Weinhardt
  6. Heterogeneity in Marginal Non-monetary Returns to Higher Education By Kamhöfer, D.A.;; Schmitz, H.;; Westphal, M.;
  7. Toward an International Comparison of Economic and Educational Mobility: Recent Findings from the Japan Child Panel Survey By Hideo Akabayashi; Ryosuke Nakamura; Michio Naoi; Chizuru Shikishima
  8. Large-scale health interventions and education: Evidence from Roll Back Malaria in Africa By Maria Kuecken; Josselin Thuilliez; Marie-Anne Valfort
  9. Cheating and Incentives: Learning from a Policy Experiment By Cesar Martinelli; Susan W. Parker; Ana Cristina PeÌrez-Gea; Rodimiro Rodrigo
  10. Does the field of study influence students' political attitudes? By Mira Fischer; Björn Kauder; Niklas Potrafke; Heinrich W. Ursprung
  11. Efficiency of health investment: education or intelligence? By Bijwaard, G.;; van Kippersluis, H.;
  12. Jack Soper: A Pioneer in Economic Education By J.R. Clark; Joshua C. Hall; Ashley Harrison
  13. Nonpublic Competition and Public School Performance: Evidence from West Virginia By Richard J. Cebula; Joshua C. Hall; Maria Y. Tackett
  14. Evaluating non-compulsory educational interventions - the case of peer assisted study groups By Ralf Becker; Maggy Fostier
  15. How well are the links between education and other sustainable development goals covered in UN flagship reports? A contribution to the study of the science-policy interface on education in the UN system By Katia Vladimirova; David Le Blanc
  16. Determinants of Co-Authorship in Economics: The French Case By Damien BESANCENOT; Kim HUYNH; Francisco SERRANITO

  1. By: Andrietti, Vincenzo
    Abstract: I exploit a unique educational policy - implemented in most German states between 2001 and 2007 - that reduced high school duration by one year while keeping its curriculum unaltered to investigate how the resulting increase in learning intensity affected student achievement. Using 2000-2009 PISA data and a difference-in-differences approach, I find robust evidence that the reform significantly improved the reading, mathematics, and science literacy skills acquired by academic-track high school students upon treatment. A more direct estimate of the effects of the increased learning intensity - as measured by the cumulative weekly number of instructional hours delivered in high school grades - corroborates the latter finding. Furthermore, there is some evidence that the effects of the reform differ by gender and grade retention. Finally, I find no evidence of a significant average effect of the reform on high school grade retention, although I do find that the latter increased significantly for boys and for students with a migration background.
    Keywords: G8,Learning intensity,Instructional hours,Student achievement,Academic-track high school,Difference-in-Differences
    JEL: I21 I28 D04
    Date: 2015–06–01
  2. By: OECD
    Abstract: On average across OECD countries, students’ belief that they can solve mathematics problems (mathematics self-efficacy) is associated with a difference of 49 score points in mathematics – the equivalent of one year of school. There is a strong connection between how confident students feel about being able to solve pure and applied mathematics problems, and whether or not they were exposed to similar problems in class. When comparing students with similar academic performance and socio-economic status, those whose parents expected that they would enter university generally reported greater mathematics self-efficacy than those whose parents did not hold such high expectations for them.
    Date: 2015–10–13
  3. By: Lorenzo Cappellari; Antonio Di Paolo
    Abstract: We exploit the 1983 language-in-education reform that introduced Catalan alongside Spanish as medium of instruction in Catalan schools to estimate the labour market value of bilingual education. Identification is achieved in a difference-in-differences framework exploiting variation in exposure to the reform across years of schooling and years of birth. We find positive wage returns to bilingual education and no effects on employment, hours of work or occupation. Results are robust to education-cohort specific trends or selection into schooling and are mainly stemming from exposure at compulsory education. We show that the effect worked through increased Catalan proficiency for Spanish speakers and that there were also positive effects for Catalan speakers from families with low education. These findings are consistent with human capital effects rather than with more efficient job search or reduced discrimination. Exploiting the heterogeneous effects of the reform as an instrument for proficiency we find sizeable earnings effects of skills in Catalan.
    Keywords: bilingual education, returns to schooling, language-in-education reform, Catalonia
    JEL: J24 J31 I28
    Date: 2015–10
  4. By: Michael P. Cameron (University of Waikato); Sialupapu Siameja (University of Waikato)
    Abstract: Improving student retention and academic performance is a key objective for higher education institutions, and finding effective interventions for assisting with at-risk students is therefore important. In this paper we evaluate a proactive pastoral care intervention that was trialled in an introductory economics course. We first identified students at high risk of failure, and then randomised these students into two treatment groups and a control group. The first treatment group received an email with information about academic support, while the second treatment group received the email as well as a personal telephone call to follow up. In evaluating the impact of the intervention trial, we found that the first intervention did not significantly improve student outcomes, but the second intervention did improve outcomes in one of the two semesters evaluated. However, the statistically insignificant results were positive and statistical insignificance may be due to a lack of statistical power. Overall, the initiative was a qualified success. It is both simple and cost-effective, and should be considered for wider implementation and further evaluation.
    Keywords: academic performance; pastoral care; student retention; randomised-controlled trial; New Zealand
    JEL: A22 I21
    Date: 2015–09–13
  5. By: Benjamin Faber; Rosa Sanchis-Guarner; Felix Weinhardt
    Abstract: Governments are making it a priority to upgrade information and communication technologies (ICT) with the aim to increase available internet connection speeds. This paper presents a new empirical strategy to estimate the causal effects of these policies, and applies it to the questions of whether and how ICT upgrades affect educational attainment. We draw on a rich collection of microdata that allows us to link administrative test score records for the population of English primary and secondary school students to the available ICT at their home addresses. To base estimations on exogenous variation in ICT, we notice that the boundaries of usually invisible telephone exchange station catchment areas give rise to substantial and essentially randomly placed jumps in the available ICT across neighboring residences. Using this design across more than 20,000 boundaries in England, we find that even very large changes in available broadband connection speeds have a precisely estimated zero effect on educational attainment. Guided by a simple model we then bring to bear additional microdata on student time and internet use to quantify the potentially opposing mechanisms underlying the zero reduced form effect. While jumps in the available ICT appear to increase student consumption of online content, we find no significant effects on student time spent studying online or offline, or on their learning productivity.
    Keywords: Education, information and communication technology, internet
    JEL: I20 D83
    Date: 2015–10
  6. By: Kamhöfer, D.A.;; Schmitz, H.;; Westphal, M.;
    Abstract: In this paper we estimate the effects of college education on cognitive abilities and health exploiting exogenous variation in college availability and student loan regulations. By means of emiparametric local instrumental variables techniques we estimate marginal treatment effects in an environment of essential heterogeneity. The results suggest heterogeneous but always positive effects on cognitive skills and homogeneously positive effects for all health outcomes but mental health, where the effects are around zero throughout. We find that likely mechanisms of positive physical health returns are effects of college education on physically demanding activities on the job and health behavior such as smoking and drinking while mentally more demanding jobs might explain the skill returns.
    Keywords: returns to higher education; cognitive abilities; health; marginal treatment effect;
    JEL: C31 H52 I12 I21
    Date: 2015–10
  7. By: Hideo Akabayashi (Faculty of Economics, Keio University); Ryosuke Nakamura (Faculty of Economics, Fukuoka University); Michio Naoi (Faculty of Economics, Keio University); Chizuru Shikishima (Department of Psychology, Faculty of Liberal Arts, Teikyo)
    Abstract: In past decades, income inequality has risen in most developed countries. There is growing interest among economists in international comparisons of economic and educational mobility. This is aided by the availability of internationally comparable, large-scale data. The present paper aims to make three contributions. First, we introduce the Japan Child Panel Survey (JCPS), the first longitudinal survey of school-age children that includes cognitive and non-cognitive measures, and rich household information. The JCPS was developed to measure dynamic inter-relationships between children's academic and social outcomes, their family background, and local policy and environment, in a way that allows comparison of the results with international data. Second, based on JCPS data, we present selected results of the dynamics of inequality in multiple indicators of children's educational and behavioral outcomes. We found that changes in cognitive achievement across parental income groups, the degree of mobility of cognitive test scores, and the correlation between the difficulty score and parental education in Japan are similar to other countries, such as the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, and Germany. Finally we discuss issues underlying the globalization of education research based on our experiences with the JCPS. We discuss reasons and strategies for further globalization of education research in Japan, and propose suggestions as to how Japanese education research can move toward better international collaboration, particularly in research on economic and educational mobility.
    Keywords: Economic Inequality, Family Background, Educational Inequality and Mobility, Panel Data, Cognitive and Non-cognitive Abilities
    JEL: D31 I24 J13
    Date: 2015–09–29
  8. By: Maria Kuecken (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne - Paris School of Economics); Josselin Thuilliez (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne - Paris School of Economics); Marie-Anne Valfort (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne - Paris School of Economics)
    Abstract: Replying on microeconomic data, we examine the impact of the Roll Back Malaria (RBM) campaigns on the educational attainment of primary schoolchildren across 14 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. Combining a difference-in-differences approach with an instrumental variables analysis, we exploit exogenous variation in pre-campaign malaria risk and exogenous variation in exposure to the timing and disbursements of the RBM campaign. In 13 of 14 countries, the RBM campaign substantially improved schooling attainment at an average cost of $ 13.19 per additional year, which is highly cost-effective as compared to standard educational interventions
    Keywords: Health; education; Africa; spillovers; quasi-experiment; Roll Back Malaria
    JEL: I15 I21 O15
    Date: 2013–10
  9. By: Cesar Martinelli (Interdisciplinary Center for Economic Science and Department of Economics, George Mason University); Susan W. Parker (Center for Research and Teaching in Economics, Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas (CIDE)); Ana Cristina PeÌrez-Gea (Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM)); Rodimiro Rodrigo (SecretariÌa de Hacienda y CreÌdito PuÌblico, MeÌxico)
    Abstract: We use a database generated by a policy intervention that incentivized learning as measured by standardized exams to investigate empirically the relationship between cheating by students and cash incentives to students and teachers. We adapt methods from the education measurement literature to calculate the extent of cheating, and show that cheating is more prevalent under treatments that provide monetary incentives to students (versus no incentives, or incentives only to teachers), both in the sense of a larger number of cheating students per classroom and in the sense of more cheating relations per classroom. We also provide evidence of learning to cheat, with both the number of cheating students per classroom and the average number of cheating relations increasing over the years under treatments that provide monetary incentives to students.
    Date: 2015–10
  10. By: Mira Fischer (Department of Management, University of Köln, Germany); Björn Kauder (Center of Public Finance and POlitical Economy, Ifo, Germany); Niklas Potrafke (Center of Public Finance and POlitical Economy, Ifo, Germany); Heinrich W. Ursprung (Department of Economics, University of Konstanz, Germany)
    Abstract: We investigate whether the field of study influences university students’ political attitudes. To disentangle self-selection from learning effects, we first investigate whether the fields of study chosen by the incoming students correlate with their political attitudes. In a second step we explore how the political attitudes change as the students progress in their studies. Our results are based on a German pseudo-panel survey, the sample size of which exceeds that of comparable student surveys by an order of magnitude. We find systematic differences between the students’ political attitudes across eight fields of study. These differences can in most cases be attributed to self-selection. A notable exception is economics. Even though self-selection is also important, training in economics has an unambiguous influence on the political attitudes: by the time of graduation, economics students are about 6.2 percentage points more likely than they were as freshmen to agree with liberal-democratic policy positions.
    Keywords: Indoctrination, Nature versus nurture, Field of study, Political socialization, Political attitudes, Economics
    JEL: A13 A22 D72 Z13
    Date: 2015–09–28
  11. By: Bijwaard, G.;; van Kippersluis, H.;
    Abstract: In this paper we hypothesize that education is associated with a higher efficiency of health investment, yet that this efficiency advantage is solely driven by intelligence. We operationalize efficiency of health investment as the probability of dying conditional on a certain hospital diagnosis, and estimate a multistate structural equation model with three states: (i) healthy, (ii) hospitalized, and (iii) death. We use data from a Dutch cohort born around 1940 that links intelligence tests at age 12 to later-life hospitalization and mortality records. The results suggest that higher intelligence induces the higher educated to be more efficient users of health investment - intelligent individuals have a clear survival advantage for most hospital diagnoses - yet for unanticipated health shocks and diseases that require complex treatments such as COPD, education still plays a role.
    Keywords: education; intelligence; health; multistate duration model;
    JEL: C41 I14 I24
    Date: 2015–09
  12. By: J.R. Clark (The University of Tennessee-Chattanooga); Joshua C. Hall (West Virginia University, Department of Economics); Ashley Harrison (The University of Tennessee-Chattanooga)
    Abstract: John “Jack†Soper passed away on August 9, 2013. A prolific researcher who retired as the John J. Kahl Sr. Chair in Entrepreneurship at John Carroll University, Soper was a leading light in the field of economic education. His scholarship in the 1970s and 1980splayed a very important role in establishing the field. In this educational note, we summarize and highlight his contributions to the measurement of economic literacy and the modelling of student learning in the collegiate and precollege classrooms.
    Keywords: economic education; private enterprise; education production
    JEL: A20 A21 A22
    Date: 2015–07
  13. By: Richard J. Cebula (Jacksonville University, Davis College of Business); Joshua C. Hall (West Virginia University, Department of Economics); Maria Y. Tackett (West Virginia University, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: In this study, we investigate whether nonpublic school enrollment affects the performance of public school districts. If homeschooling and private schools act as competition, public school districts test scores should be positively associated with nonpublic enrollment. Using data on West Virginia county school districts, and controlling for endogeneity with an instrumental variables approach, we find that a one standard deviation increase in relative nonpublic enrollment in a county is associated with statistically significant increases in public school district test scores. Our findings thus confirm that nonpublic enrollment and the competition it provides act to improve, rather than impede, public school performance.
    Keywords: competition, markets, education
    JEL: H52 I28
    Date: 2015–07
  14. By: Ralf Becker; Maggy Fostier
    Date: 2015
  15. By: Katia Vladimirova; David Le Blanc
    Abstract: In 2015, a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will succeed the Millennium Development Goals as reference goals for international development for the period 2015-2030. Education was identified as a standalone goal (SDG4). Epistemic communities have documented a number of links between education and other SDG areas, and policy makers have long recognized many of them. Based on an exhaustive content analysis of 40 global reports, this paper examines how well such links are represented in flagship publications of the United Nations system. Taken together, the reports identify links between education and all the SDGs, with the notable exception of SDG 14 on oceans. For most of the SDGs, causal links are identified in both directions, from education to other goal areas and vice-versa. The most emphasized connections are those between education and growth (SDG8) and gender (SDG5). By contrast, links with energy (SDG7), water (SDG 6), cities (SDG 11), sustainable consumption and production (SDG 12) and climate change (SDG 13) receive much less attention in the sum of UN flagship publications. While some causal links are identified and highlighted as important, relevant constraints are sometimes not extensively discussed, and few concrete policy options to act on those links are provided. Going forward, it would be important to assess whether the messages contained in UN flagship reports adequately reflect the state of scientific knowledge and the lessons learnt from development programs that focus on education in relation to specific SDGs. The systematic analysis provided here can offer a basis for an integrated analysis of policy priorities for education as a whole.
    Keywords: Education, Sustainable Development Goals, science-policy interface, scientific assessments, policy integration, sustainable development
    JEL: I31 I38 Z13
    Date: 2015–10
  16. By: Damien BESANCENOT; Kim HUYNH; Francisco SERRANITO
    Date: 2015

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