nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2019‒01‒21
five papers chosen by
Marco Novarese
Università del Piemonte Orientale

  1. International Mobility of Students in Italy and the UK: Does It Pay off and for Whom? By Schnepf, Sylke V.; d'Hombres, Beatrice
  2. Financial Education in Schools: A Meta-Analysis of Experimental Studies By Tim Kaiser; Lukas Menkhoff
  3. The Impact of Grade Inflation on Higher Education Enrolment and Earnings By Nordin, Martin; Heckley , Gawain; Gerdtham , Ulf-G.
  4. Teaching, Gender and Labour Market Incentives By Carroll, David; Parasnis, Jaai; Tani, Massimiliano
  5. Does Education Indoctrinate? The Effect of Education on Political Preferences In Democracies and Autocracies By Ishac Diwan; Irina Vartanova

  1. By: Schnepf, Sylke V. (European Commission, DG Joint Research Centre); d'Hombres, Beatrice (European Commission)
    Abstract: International student mobility is the most recognised element of Erasmus+, a major EU policy. Not enough is known about the causal effect of studying abroad on labour market outcomes. This is because most of the existing studies dismiss selection bias: the different composition of students opting and not opting for studying abroad. The purpose of this paper is to answer the following three questions, whilst accounting for selection bias. First, does international student mobility (ISM) have an effect on labour market outcomes? Second, do the returns to ISM vary between two countries with contrasting labour market and education systems? Third, do the returns to ISM differ according to the socio-economic background of the students? Results are compared between Italy and the UK using Italian Institute of National Statistics and UK Higher Education Statistics Agency graduate survey data. Using propensity score matching, the returns to study-related stays abroad are estimated on a set of labour market outcomes around six to twelve months and three years after graduation for undergraduates (UK and Italy) and postgraduates (Italy only). Results indicate that mobility is positively associated with some outcome variables under scrutiny. Mobile graduates seem to benefit from better employment chances than non-mobile graduates. Returns to ISM tend to be slightly higher among graduates in Italy. Mobility seems to matter most for uptake and completion of further post-graduate studies in Italy. It is the especially the socially disadvantaged mobile who opt for further education after graduation.
    Keywords: international student mobility, mobility abroad, labour market outcomes, propensity score matching, Italy, UK
    JEL: I23 I24
    Date: 2018–12
  2. By: Tim Kaiser; Lukas Menkhoff
    Abstract: We study the literature on school financial education programs for children and youth via a quantitative meta-analysis of 37 (quasi-) experiments. We find that financial education treatment has, on average, a significant and sizeable impact on financial knowledge (+0.25 SD), similar to educational interventions in other domains. Additionally, we document small but still significant effects on financial behaviors (+0.05 SD). These results are robust to restricting the sample to 18 randomized experiments and they hold irrespective of the meta-analytic method used. Metaregressions show the beneficial effect of more intensive treatments and smaller class size, albeit with decreasing marginal returns.
    Keywords: financial education, financial literacy, financial behavior, meta-analysis
    JEL: I21 A21 D14
    Date: 2018
  3. By: Nordin, Martin (Swedish Institute for Food and Agricultural Economics, Lund University, Sweden); Heckley , Gawain (Health Economics Unit, Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund University, Sweden); Gerdtham , Ulf-G. (Department of Economics, Lund University)
    Abstract: Although grade inflation is unfair and may imply inefficient allocation of human resources, current knowledge of grade inflation effects on individual outcomes is scarce. One explanation is probably the challenge of measuring and estimating causal grade inflation effects. This study examines the consequences of grade inflation at the upper secondary education level on enrolment in higher education and earnings for Sweden. Rigorous diagnostic testing supports our empirical approach. Grade inflation at the school level affects earnings mainly through choice of university and the chosen field of education, rather than through enrolment per se, because attending universities of higher quality and pursuing high-paying fields of education have a substantial impact on earnings. On the other hand, high-skilled students attending upper secondary schools without grade inflation and, unexpectedly, low-skilled women attending "lenient" schools are harmed by this. This causes extensive unfairness and, plausibly, detrimental welfare effects.
    Keywords: grade inflation; upper-secondary education; higher education; earnings
    JEL: I20 I21 J24
    Date: 2019–01–10
  4. By: Carroll, David (UNSW Canberra); Parasnis, Jaai (Monash University); Tani, Massimiliano (University of New South Wales)
    Abstract: The concentration of women in the teaching profession is widely noted and generally attributed to gender differences in preferences and social roles. Further, gender segregation exists within this profession – women make up almost all of the primary and pre-primary teaching cohorts, while men who choose to become teachers tend to specialise in secondary schooling and administrative roles. To what extent is this gender structure in teaching a response to economic incentives from the labour market? Our research addresses this question by studying the effects of wage structure on the decision to become a teacher. In particular, we ask what the most attractive choice is for a graduate given the wage structure of the previous graduate cohort. We show that the labour market, especially the relative returns to education across occupations for men and women, can explain these vocational choices in the Australian context. Women with bachelor qualifications receive higher returns as teachers, while men with bachelor qualifications receive higher returns in other occupations. In contrast, while both men and women with postgraduate qualifications earn higher returns in other occupations, the difference is consistently smaller for women than men. Women face a lower opportunity cost for becoming a teacher compared to men. A more balanced gender representation among teachers seems unlikely given the existing structure of returns to education, by gender, across professions.
    Keywords: occupational segregation, teachers, opportunity cost, decomposition
    JEL: J16 J24 J31
    Date: 2018–12
  5. By: Ishac Diwan (Paris Sciences et Lettres, Columbia University and ERF); Irina Vartanova
    Abstract: Using World Value Survey and European Value Study data spanning 96 countries and over 300,000 individuals, we first establish that the regime type individuals live under moderates the correlation between education and political values. While more education is always associated with more political emancipation, the effect is larger in democracies than in autocracies. We then investigate two mechanisms that can lead to these outcomes – indoctrination through the education system, and the social and political interests of the educated. First, we look at all countries that have undergone regime change, and ask whether individuals educated under different regimes hold different political values. We find evidence that those educated under a democratic system have a larger political return to education than those educated in autocracies. Second, using the full sample, we relate individuals’ political values to both the regime under which they have studied, and the regime under which they currently live. We find that the educated tend to be more conservative politically when they live in anocracies, than when they live in democracies or autocracies.
    Date: 2018–04–12

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