nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2020‒06‒22
eleven papers chosen by
Nádia Simões
Instituto Universitário de Lisboa

  1. The Economic Impact of Access to Public Four-Year Colleges By Jonathan Smith; Joshua Goodman; Michael Hurwitz
  2. The causal effect of early tracking in German schools on the intergenerational transmission of education By Dominique Sulzmaier
  3. Order Matters: Eliciting Maternal Beliefs on Educational Choices By Pablo Brañas-Garza; Riccardo Ciacci; Ericka Rascón Ramírez
  4. Understanding Spillover of Peer Parental Education: Randomization Evidence and Mechanisms By Bobby Chung; Jian Zou
  5. What Factors Drive Individual Misperceptions of the Returns to Schooling in Tanzania? Some Lessons for Education Policy By Plamen Nikolov; Nusrat Jimi
  6. Spatial divisions of poverty and wealth: How much does segregation matter for educational achievement? By Rafael Carranza; Gabriel Otero; Dante Contreras
  7. Parental divorces and children's educational outcomes in Senegal By Juliette Crespin-Boucaud; Rozenn Hotte
  8. The Impacts of COVID-19 on Minority Unemployment: First Evidence from April 2020 CPS Microdata By Couch, Kenneth A.; Fairlie, Robert W.; Xu, Huanan
  9. Higher education funding, welfare and inequality in equilibrium By Gustavo Mellior
  10. College Achievement and Attainment Gaps: Evidence from West Point Cadets By Dario Cestau; Dennis Epple; Richard Romano; Holger Sieg; Carl Wojtaszek
  11. Women’s Work, Housework and Childcare, Before and During COVID-19 By Daniela Del Boca; Noemi Oggero; Paola Profeta; Maria Cristina Rossi

  1. By: Jonathan Smith; Joshua Goodman; Michael Hurwitz
    Abstract: We provide the first estimated economic impacts of students’ access to an entire sector of public higher education in the U.S. Approximately half of Georgia high school graduates who enroll in college do so in the state’s public four-year sector, which requires minimum SAT scores for admission. Regression discontinuity estimates show enrollment in public four-year institutions boosts students’ household income around age 30 by 20 percent, and has even larger impacts for those from low income high schools. Access to this sector has little clear impact on student loan balances or other measures of financial health. For the marginal student, enrollment in such institutions has large private returns even in the short run and positive returns to state budgets in the long run.
    JEL: I24 I26 J24
    Date: 2020–05
  2. By: Dominique Sulzmaier
    Abstract: Numerous studies have found a high intergenerational transmission of education in Germany which might be caused by the relatively early age at which the German school system tracks students into differentschool types. This study contributes to the scarce literatureontheeffectofachangeintheageoftrackingearlyintheschoolingcareeronthe intergenerational transmission of education and reveals new evidence on the heterogeneity of the effect. The identi?cation strategy exploits a recent reform in one German state, whichchangedthetimeoftrackingfromaftergradesixtoaftergradefour.Theresultsof adifference-in-differencesapproachwithdatafromtheGermanMicrocensussuggestthat earlier tracking increases intergenerational transmission of both, low and high education. Male students and students in rural areas appear to drive the effect.
    Keywords: intergenerationaltransmissionofeducation,tracking,schoolattainment,Germany, difference-in-differences
    JEL: I21 I24 C54
    Date: 2020–01
  3. By: Pablo Brañas-Garza; Riccardo Ciacci; Ericka Rascón Ramírez
    Abstract: Subjective expectation data on education has been increasingly used by social scientists to better understand current investments in human capital. Despite its recognised value by scholars, there is little evidence about how the elicitation of such data might be sensitive to questionnaire design. Using a 2x2 between-subjects experimental design, we analyse how sensitive the elicitation of subjective expectation data on educational outcome is to question order. Our design allows us to explore whether collecting data on parental education before the elicitation of parental beliefs on their children’s educational outcomes anchors the elicitation of the latter; and whether parental expectations on their older offsprings anchors their expectations on their younger children. We find that mothers (main respondents) who have been exposed to the non-anchored treatment results in more optimistic parental expectations. When splitting our sample into households with low and high educated mothers, we observe that low educated mothers are more susceptible to anchoring effects. Using a conservative projection of observed years of schooling of young adults on young cohorts, we find that the double-anchored beliefs better predicts this projection than the rest of the treatments. Our findings inform to what extent the collection of subjective expectations data is subject to anchoring and which type of populations might be more sensitive to such phenomenon.
    Keywords: Expectations on education; Survey design; Order effects; Anchoring
    JEL: C9 D8 I29
    Date: 2020
  4. By: Bobby Chung (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign); Jian Zou (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
    Abstract: We utilize random assignment of students into classrooms in China middle schools to study the mechanisms behind the spillover of peer parental education on student achievement. Analyzing the China Education Panel Survey, we find a causal relationship between classmates' maternal education and student test score. In addition to the conventional peer effect and teacher response channel, we identify mother adjustment of parenting style as another important mediating factor. We provide suggestive evidence about the existence of mother's network, which facilitates the change in parenting style. We also find that the spillover of peer maternal education on non-repeaters and non-migrant students is stronger, primarily driven by higher parental investment on time.
    Keywords: peer effects, peers' parents, parental investments, parenting style
    JEL: D91 I24 J13 Z13
    Date: 2020–06
  5. By: Plamen Nikolov; Nusrat Jimi
    Abstract: Evidence on educational returns and the factors that determine the demand for schooling in developing countries is extremely scarce. Building on previous studies that show individuals underestimating the returns to schooling, we use two surveys from Tanzania to estimate both the actual and perceived schooling returns and subsequently examine what factors drive individual misperceptions regarding actual returns. Using ordinary least squares and instrumental variable methods, we find that each additional year of schooling in Tanzania increases earnings, on average, by 9 to 11 percent. We find that on average individuals underestimate returns to schooling by 74 to 79 percent and three factors are associated with these misperceptions: income, asset poverty and educational attainment. Shedding light on what factors relate to individual beliefs about educational returns can inform policy on how to structure effective interventions in order to correct individual misperceptions.
    Date: 2020–06
  6. By: Rafael Carranza (London School of Economics); Gabriel Otero (Utrecht University); Dante Contreras (Universidad de Chile)
    Abstract: We explore how different spatial compositions affect the educational achievement in mathematics of 16 year-old students in Chile, a Latin American country with high income inequality and school segregation. We develop a critical review on the literature on negative "neighbourhood effects" associated with concentrated poverty, complementing it with studies concerning self-segregation preferences by members of the upper-middle class. We combine administrative data about student performance with survey data for the 52 municipalities of the Metropolitan Region of Santiago de Chile. We cluster the districts based on factors such as unemployment, economic inequality, access to services, experiences of violence and stigmatization. Using longitudinal data, we look at the effect of each of the six spatial clusters on academic performance. Spatial clusters report a significant effect, above and beyond that of individual, household, and school-level characteristics. We conclude that space complements and reinforces the processes of accumulation of socioeconomic (dis)advantages.
    Keywords: Class; Education; Inequality; Socio-economic environment; Urban studies.
    JEL: D63 I24 R23
    Date: 2020–06
  7. By: Juliette Crespin-Boucaud (PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, PSE - Paris School of Economics); Rozenn Hotte (THEMA - Théorie économique, modélisation et applications - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - CY - CY Cergy Paris Université)
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of divorce on investments in children's human capital at the primary school level in Senegal. We use a siblings fixed-effects estimation that exploits the variations in the age of the siblings at the time of divorce while controlling for family-invariant omitted variables. We compare children who were old enough to have been enrolled in primary school to their younger siblings, for whom enrollment decisions had not yet been taken at the time of the divorce. We find that younger siblings are more likely than their older siblings to have attended primary school, but there are no differences between siblings when considering primary school completion. Overall, divorce does not seem to have negative consequences on whether children have ever been enrolled in primary school.
    Keywords: Education,Senegal,Divorce
    Date: 2020–05
  8. By: Couch, Kenneth A. (University of Connecticut); Fairlie, Robert W. (University of California, Santa Cruz); Xu, Huanan (Indiana University)
    Abstract: COVID-19 abruptly impacted the labor market with the unemployment rate jumping to 14.7 percent less than two months after state governments began adopting social distancing measures. Unemployment of this magnitude has not been seen since the Great Depression. This paper provides the first study of how the pandemic impacted minority unemployment using CPS microdata through April 2020. African-Americans experienced an increase in unemployment to 16.6 percent, less than anticipated based on previous recessions. In contrast, Latinx, with an unemployment rate of 18.2 percent, were disproportionately hard hit by COVID-19. Adjusting for concerns of the BLS regarding misclassification of unemployment, we create an upper-bound measure of the national unemployment rate of 26.5 percent, which is higher than the peak observed in the Great Depression. The April 2020 upper-bound unemployment rates are an alarming 31.8 percent for blacks and 31.4 percent for Latinx. Difference-in-difference estimates suggest that blacks were, at most, only slightly disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. Non-linear decomposition estimates indicate that a slightly favorable industry distribution partly protected them being hit harder by COVID-19. The most impacted group are Latinx. Difference-in-difference estimates unequivocally indicate that Latinx were disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. An unfavorable occupational distribution and lower skills contributed to why Latinx experienced much higher unemployment rates than whites. These findings of early impacts of COVID-19 on unemployment raise important concerns about long-term economic effects for minorities.
    Keywords: unemployment, inequality, labor, race, minorities, COVID-19, coronavirus, shelter-in-place, social distancing
    JEL: J6 J7 J15
    Date: 2020–05
  9. By: Gustavo Mellior
    Abstract: This paper analyses theoretically and quantitatively the effect that different higher education funding policies have on welfare (on aggregate and at the individual level) and wealth inequality. A heterogeneous agent model in continuous time, which has uninsurable income risk and endogenous educational choice is used to evaluate ï¬ ve different higher education ï¬ nancing schemes. Educational investments can be self ï¬ nanced, supported by government guaranteed student loans - that may come with or without income contingent support - or be covered by the public sector. When educational costs are small, differences in outcomes amongst systems are negligible. On the other hand, when these costs rise to realistic levels we see that there can be large gains in welfare and signiï¬ cant drops in inequality by moving to a system with more public sector support. This support can come in the form of tuition subsidies and/or income contingent student loans. However, as the cost of education and the share of debtors in society gets larger, it is preferable to increase public support in the form of tuition subsidies. The reason is that there is a pecuniary externality of debt that gets magniï¬ ed when student loans become excessive. While I identify large steady state welfare gains from more public sector ï¬ nancing, I show that the transition costs can be large enough to justify the status quo.
    Keywords: Incomplete markets, Higher education funding, Human capital
    JEL: D52 D58 E24 I22 I23
    Date: 2020–05–27
  10. By: Dario Cestau; Dennis Epple; Richard Romano; Holger Sieg; Carl Wojtaszek
    Abstract: Assessing the effectiveness of education by race and gender is as difficult as it is important. We investigate this question utilizing data for eleven cohorts at West Point, a distinguished military academy and highly ranked liberal arts college. Employing matching using entry scores on three comprehensive measures, we obtain exceptional matches of score distributions for black and matched white students. We find black students have lower graduating achievement scores than matched white students, but comparable rates of graduation, retention in the Army after graduation, and early promotion. Hispanic-white comparisons reveal no differences. Female-male comparisons reveal women have lower attainment and retention rates.
    JEL: I2 J15 J24
    Date: 2020–05
  11. By: Daniela Del Boca (University of Turin and Collegio Carlo Alberto); Noemi Oggero; Paola Profeta; Maria Cristina Rossi
    Abstract: Evidence from past economic crises indicates that recessions often affect men’s and women’s employment differently, with a greater impact on male-dominated sectors. The current COVID-19 crisis presents novel characteristics that have affected economic, health and social phenomena over wide swaths of the economy. Social distancing measures to combat the spread of the virus, such as working from home and school closures, have placed an additional tremendous burden on families. Using new survey data collected in April 2020 from a representative sample of Italian women, we analyse jointly the effect of COVID-19 on the working arrangements, housework and childcare of couples where both partners work. Our results show that most of the additional workload associated to COVID-19 falls on women while childcare activities are more equally shared within the couple than housework activities. According to our empirical estimates, changes to the amount of housework done by women during the emergency do not seem to depend on their partners’ working arrangements. With the exception of those continuing to work at their usual place of work, all of the women surveyed spend more time on housework than before. In contrast, the amount of time men devote to housework does depend on their partners’ working arrangements: men whose partners continue to work at their usual workplace spend more time on housework than before. The link between time devoted to childcare and working arrangements is more symmetric, with both women and men spending less time with their children if they continue to work away from home. For home schooling, too, parents who continue to go to their usual workplace after the lockdown are less likely to spend greater amounts of time with their children than before. Finally, analysis of work-life balance satisfaction shows that working women with children aged 0-5 are those who say they find balancing work and family more difficult during COVID-19. The work-life balance is especially difficult to achieve for those with partners who continue to work outside the home during the emergency.
    Keywords: COVID-19, work arrangements, housework, childcare
    JEL: J13 J16 J21
    Date: 2020–06

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