nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2022‒08‒15
nine papers chosen by
Nádia Simões
Instituto Universitário de Lisboa

  1. Gendered Teacher Feedback, Students' Math Performance and Enrollment Outcomes: A Text Mining Approach By Pauline Charousset; Marion Monnet
  2. Do school reforms shape study behavior at university? Evidence from an instructional time reform By Jakob Schwerter; Nicolai Netz; Nicolas H\"ubner
  3. STEM Summer Programs for Underrepresented Youth Increase STEM Degrees By Sarah R. Cohodes; Helen Ho; Silvia C. Robles
  4. An Evaluation of a National Program to Reduce Student Absenteeism in High School By Michael Baker; Nina Drange; Hege Marie Gjefsen
  5. Are Effective Teachers for Students with Disabilities Effective Teachers for All? By W. Jesse Wood; Ijun Lai; Neil R. Filosa; Scott A. Imberman; Nathan D. Jones; Katharine O. Strunk
  6. Growing Up Together: Sibling Correlation, Parental Influence, and Intergenerational Educational Mobility in Developing Countries By Ahsan, Md. Nazmul; Emran, M. Shahe; Jiang, Hanchen; Han, Qingyang; Shilpi, Forhad
  7. Education, public expenditure and economic growth under the prism of performance By Pierre Lesuisse
  8. Who Benefits from Meritocracy? By Moreira, Diana B.; Perez, Santiago
  9. Education, Labor Force Composition, and Growth. A General Equilibrium Analysis By Roberto Roson

  1. By: Pauline Charousset (PSE - Paris School of Economics - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS-PSL - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement); Marion Monnet (INED - Institut national d'études démographiques)
    Abstract: This paper studies how student gender influences the feedback given by teachers, and how this affects the student's performance in school. Using the written feedback provided to the universe of French high school students by their math teachers over a five-year period, we show that teachers use different words to assess the performance of equally able male and female students. Teachers highlight the positive behavior and encourage the efforts of their female students while, for similarly-performing males, they criticize the students for unruly behavior and praise them for their intellectual skills. To understand how this relates to the student's subsequent educational outcomes, we then match these data to records from French national examinations, as well as these students' higher education application behavior and ultimate institution of enrollment. Using the quasi-random allocation of teachers to classes, we estimate that being assigned to a teacher with feedback that is one standard deviation more gendered improves student math performance by 1.6 percent of a standard deviation on average, but does not affect students' enrollment in higher education in the following year.
    Keywords: teacher feedback,text mining,gender,student performance,higher education
    Date: 2022–07
  2. By: Jakob Schwerter; Nicolai Netz; Nicolas H\"ubner
    Abstract: Early-life environments can have long-lasting developmental effects. Interestingly, research on how school reforms affect later-life study behavior has hardly adopted this perspective. Therefore, we investigated a staggered school reform that reduced the number of school years and increased weekly instructional time for secondary school students in most German federal states. We analyzed this quasi-experiment in a difference-in-differences framework using representative large-scale survey data on 71,426 students who attended university between 1998 and 2016. We found negative effects of reform exposure on hours spent attending classes and on self-study, and a larger time gap between school completion and higher education entry. Our results support the view that research should examine unintended long-term effects of school reforms on individual life courses.
    Date: 2022–07
  3. By: Sarah R. Cohodes; Helen Ho; Silvia C. Robles
    Abstract: The federal government and many individual organizations have invested in programs to support diversity in the STEM pipeline, including STEM summer programs for high school students, but there is little rigorous evidence of their efficacy. We fielded a randomized controlled trial to study a suite of such programs targeted to underrepresented high school students at an elite, technical institution. The STEM summer programs differ in their length (one week, six weeks, or six months) and modality (on-site or online). Students offered seats in the STEM summer programs are more likely to enroll in, persist through, and graduate from college, with gains in institutional quality coming from both the host institution and other elite universities. The programs also increase the likelihood that students graduate with a degree in a STEM field, with the most intensive program increasing four-year graduation with a STEM degree attainment by 33 percent. The shift to STEM degrees increases potential earnings by 2 to 6 percent. Program-induced gains in college quality fully account for the gains in graduation, but gains in STEM degree attainment are larger than predicted based on institutional differences.
    JEL: I21 I24 J15 J16
    Date: 2022–07
  4. By: Michael Baker; Nina Drange; Hege Marie Gjefsen
    Abstract: Starting in the 2016/17 academic year, high school students in Norway who missed more than 10 percent of the hours in a given course without a medical excuse could not receive a final grade. We examine the impacts of this policy on student absenteeism, the incidence of the no grade penalty and two measures of student achievement. The policy had the intended impact on absenteeism, reducing total absence by 20-28 percent, and chronic absence by 29-39 percent in the high school grades. This behavioral response was largely sufficient to avoid the academic penalty for absence over the 10 percent threshold under the new law. Finally, we find a mixed impact on student achievement: little impact on externally graded, end of year exams, and modest evidence of a positive impact of 6 percent of a standard deviation on teacher awarded GPA.
    JEL: I21 J24
    Date: 2022–07
  5. By: W. Jesse Wood; Ijun Lai; Neil R. Filosa; Scott A. Imberman; Nathan D. Jones; Katharine O. Strunk
    Abstract: The success of many students with disabilities (SWDs) depends on access to high-quality general education teachers. Yet, most measures of teacher value-added measures (VAM) fail to distinguish between a teacher’s effectiveness in educating students with and without disabilities. We create two VAM measures: one focusing on teachers’ effectiveness in improving outcomes for SWDs, and one for non-SWDs. We find top-performing teachers for non-SWDs often have relatively lower VAMs for SWDs, and that SWDs sort to teachers with lower scores in both VAMs. Overall, SWD-specific VAMs may be more suitable for identifying which teachers have a history of effectiveness with SWDs and could play a role in ensuring that students are being optimally assigned to these teachers.
    JEL: I21 I24
    Date: 2022–07
  6. By: Ahsan, Md. Nazmul; Emran, M. Shahe; Jiang, Hanchen; Han, Qingyang; Shilpi, Forhad
    Abstract: We present credible and comparable evidence on intergenerational educational mobility in 53 developing countries using sibling correlation as a measure, and data from 230 waves of Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS). This is the first paper, to our knowledge, to provide estimates of sibling correlation in schooling for a large number of developing countries using high quality standardized data. Sibling correlation is an omnibus measure of mobility as it captures observed and unobserved family, community, and school factors shared by siblings when growing up together. The estimates suggest that sibling correlation in schooling in developing countries is much higher (average 0.59) than that in developed countries (average 0.41). There is substantial spatial heterogeneity across regions, Latin America and Caribbean with the highest (0.65) and Europe and Central Asia with the lowest (0.48) estimates. Country level heterogeneity within a region is more pronounced. The evolution of sibling correlation suggests a variety of mobility experiences, with some regions registering a monotonically declining trend from the 1970s birth cohort to the 1990s birth cohort (Latin America and Caribbean and East Asia and Pacific), while others remained trapped in stagnancy (South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa). The only region that experienced monotonically increasing sibling correlation is Middle East and North Africa. We take advantage of the recent approach of Bingley and Cappellari (2019) to estimate the share of sibling correlation due to intergenerational transmission. We find that relaxing the homogeneity and independence assumptions implicit in the standard model of intergenerational transmission makes the estimated share much larger. In our sample of countries, on average 74 percent of sibling correlation can be attributed to intergenerational transmission, while there are some countries where the share is more than 80 percent (most in Sub-Saharan Africa). This suggests a dominant role for the parents in determining educational opportunities of children. Evidence on the evolution of the intergenerational share, however, suggests a declining importance of the intergenerational transmission component in many countries, but the pattern is very diverse. In some cases, the trend in the intergenerational share is opposite to the trend in sibling correlation.
    Keywords: Sibling Correlation,Intergenerational Mobility,Education,Years of Schooling,Developing Countries,Intergenerational Share,Decomposition,DHS
    JEL: J0 D3 J62
    Date: 2022
  7. By: Pierre Lesuisse (BETA - Bureau d'Économie Théorique et Appliquée - AgroParisTech - UNISTRA - Université de Strasbourg - UL - Université de Lorraine - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)
    Abstract: Recursively in the literature, public spending on education is found to have an ambiguous impact on economic growth. Using World Development Indicators from the World Bank, we revisit an endogenous growth model from Blankenau et al. (2007), over the last thirty years. Considering the fiscal effect, we analyse the empirical relationship between public spending on education and economic development. Despite having a positive and significant impact on the overall group of 65 countries belonging to upper-middle and high-income countries, our main results are not robust to subgroups , focusing on the economic development. Once we control for the performance of public expenditure, to effectively generate human capital, we find a positive and significant impact from increasing expenditure on education, in what we call "performing countries". Our results demonstrate that increasing spending on education cannot be growth enhancing without considering the prism of performance.
    Keywords: Fiscal policy,Endogenous growth,Education,Performance
    Date: 2022–05
  8. By: Moreira, Diana B. (University of California, Davis); Perez, Santiago (University of California, Davis)
    Abstract: Does screening applicants using exams help or hurt the chances of lower-SES candidates? Because individuals from lower socioeconomic backgrounds fare, on average, worse than those from richer backgrounds in standardized tests, a common concern with this “meritocratic” approach is that it might have a negative impact on the opportunities of lower-SES individuals. However, an alternative view is that, even if such applicants underperformed on exams, other (potentially more discretionary and less impersonal) selection criteria might put them at an even worse disadvantage. We investigate this question using evidence from the 1883 Pendleton Act, a landmark reform in American history which introduced competitive exams to select certain federal employees. Using newly assembled data on the socioeconomic backgrounds of government employees and a difference-in-differences strategy, we find that, although the reform increased the representation of “educated outsiders” (individuals with high education but limited connections), it reduced the share of lower-SES individuals. This decline was driven by a higher representation of the middle class, with little change in the representation of upper- class applicants. The drop in the representation of lower-SES workers was stronger among applicants from states with more unequal access to schooling as well as in offices that relied more heavily on connections prior to the reform. These findings suggest that, although using exams could help select more qualified candidates, these improvements can come with the cost of increased elitism.
    Keywords: inequality, intergenerational mobility, job testing
    JEL: M5
    Date: 2022–05
  9. By: Roberto Roson (Department of Economics, University Of Venice CÃ Foscari; Loyola Andalusia University; GREEN Bocconi University Milan)
    Abstract: We propose, in this paper, a novel approach to modelling education and human capital formation in a computable general equilibrium model. Rather than adopting microeconomic-based assumptions of human capital formation, the method is based on an empirical relationship between labor force composition and expenditure in education services. After realizing a set of econometric estimates, we found some robust relationship between workers’ shares in the labor force and educational expenditure, in real terms and per capita. To assess the implications of these findings, we simulate, in a conventional CGE model for Ethiopia, the impact of an increase in public expenditure devoted to education. Our simulation results highlight the existence of a multiplicative effect, such that the overall increase in the supply of education services, in the final equilibrium state, is more than three times larger than the initial demand push. This comes associated with a positive supply shock, entailing gains in productivity, income, and welfare, as well as changes in the structure of the economy.
    Keywords: Education expenditure, Human capital, Labor productivity, CGE models, Economic growth
    JEL: C68 D58 E27 I20 J24 O11 O15 O41
    Date: 2022

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