nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2023‒09‒11
seven papers chosen by
Nádia Simões, Instituto Universitário de Lisboa 

  1. When It Hurts the Most: Timing of Parental Job Loss and a Child's Education By Bingley, Paul; Cappellari, Lorenzo; Ovidi, Marco
  2. Lost female talent: Gender differences in college aspirations and expectations in Germany By Erdmann, Melinda; Helbig, Marcel; Jacob, Marita
  3. Modelling evidence-based practice in initial teacher training: causal effects on teachers' skills, knowledge and self-efficacy By Sam Sims; Harry Fletcher-Wood; Thomas Godfrey-Faussett; Peps Mccrea; Stefanie Meliss
  4. The Disparate Impacts of College Admissions Policies on Asian American Applicants By Joshua Grossman; Sabina Tomkins; Lindsay C. Page; Sharad Goel
  5. Rural roads infrastructure and women empowerment in India By Nandwani, Bharti; Roychowdhury, Punarjit
  6. Estimating the Impact of the Age of Criminal Majority: Decomposing Multiple Treatments in a Regression Discontinuity Framework By Michael G. Mueller-Smith; Benjamin Pyle; Caroline Walker
  7. Does Unfairness Hurt Women? The Effects of Losing Unfair Competitions By Piasenti, Stefano; Valente, Marica; Van Veldhuizen, Roel; Pfeifer, Gregor

  1. By: Bingley, Paul (VIVE - The Danish Centre for Applied Social Science); Cappellari, Lorenzo (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore); Ovidi, Marco (Catholic University Milan)
    Abstract: We investigate the stages of childhood at which parental job loss is most consequential for their child's education. Using Danish administrative data linking parents experiencing plant closures to their children, we compare end-of-school outcomes to matched peers and to closures hitting after school completion age. Parental job loss disproportionally reduces test taking, scores, and high school enrolment among children exposed during infancy (age 0-1). Effects are largest for low-income families and low-achieving children. The causal chain from job loss to education likely works through reduced family income. Maternal time investment partially offsets the effect of reduced income.
    Keywords: parental labor market shocks, intergenerational mobility, child development
    JEL: J13 D10 I24
    Date: 2023–08
  2. By: Erdmann, Melinda; Helbig, Marcel; Jacob, Marita
    Abstract: Our study focuses on the gender gap in college aspirations and enrolment among high school students in Germany. We build on socialisation theory, rational choice theory, and formal restrictions to college access to explain gender differences in idealistic college aspirations, realistic college expectations, and the disparities between the two. Specifically, we examine the prevalence of 'pessimistic' college expectations, where college aspirations are higher than expectations, which we expect to be more likely among young women than young men. By analysing survey data from 1, 766 upper secondary students in Germany, we find that women are equally interested in pursuing higher education as their male counterparts. They even express higher aspirations for college enrolment. However, women are more pessimistic than men about realising their aspirations. While factors such as the subjective probability of success and perceived costs impact both genders, young women are also affected by formal restrictions limiting entry to their preferred fields of study.
    Date: 2023
  3. By: Sam Sims (UCL Centre for Education Policy & Equalising Opportunities, University College London); Harry Fletcher-Wood (Ambition Institute); Thomas Godfrey-Faussett (Ambition Institute); Peps Mccrea (Ambition Institute); Stefanie Meliss (Ambition Institute)
    Abstract: Teacher education/training often incorporates observable examples of focal teaching practices - models. Yet, there is little causal evidence on the benefits of models or how best to design them. We used a classroom simulator experiment to test the effects of video models on trainee teachers' skills, knowledge, and self-efficacy in relation to using retrieval practice at the end of a primary school science unit. Results showed that models improved participants' skills, but not their knowledge or self-efficacy. Adding annotations to the models had no additional benefit. Incorporating models in initial teacher training can help new teachers make better use of evidence-based teaching practices.
    Keywords: teachers, professional development, models
    JEL: I20
    Date: 2023–08
  4. By: Joshua Grossman; Sabina Tomkins; Lindsay C. Page; Sharad Goel
    Abstract: There is debate over whether Asian American students are admitted to selective colleges and universities at lower rates than white students with similar academic qualifications. However, there have been few empirical investigations of this issue, in large part due to a dearth of data. Here we present the results from analyzing 685, 709 applications from Asian American and white students to a subset of selective U.S. institutions over five application cycles, beginning with the 2015–2016 cycle. The dataset does not include admissions decisions, and so we construct a proxy based in part on enrollment choices. Based on this proxy, we estimate the odds that Asian American applicants were admitted to at least one of the schools we consider were 28% lower than the odds for white students with similar test scores, grade-point averages, and extracurricular activities. The gap was particularly pronounced for students of South Asian descent (49% lower odds). We trace this pattern in part to two factors. First, many selective colleges openly give preference to the children of alumni, and we find that white applicants were substantially more likely to have such legacy status than Asian applicants, especially South Asian applicants. Second, after adjusting for observed student characteristics, the institutions we consider appear less likely to admit students from geographic regions with relatively high shares of applicants who are Asian. We hope these results inform ongoing discussions on the equity of college admissions policies.
    JEL: I23 I24
    Date: 2023–08
  5. By: Nandwani, Bharti; Roychowdhury, Punarjit
    Abstract: The paper examines the impact of a rural roads construction program in India on women's outcomes. While spatial integration can provide women with increased education and employment opportunities, the extent of benefits might be limited by underlying gender norms. We identify the impact of the policy by exploiting the program rule that assigned roads based on the village population. Using a two-way fixed effect methodology, we find that increase in rural roads construction lowers mobility restrictions faced by women and improves norms around domestic violence. However, the result are mixed with respect to participation in other decision making and financial autonomy. Additionally, while we find positive impact on education, there is no impact on employment outcomes for females. We argue that a possible reason for a partial improvement in women outcomes could be gendered impact of the policy - men benefit more in terms of employment than women.
    Keywords: Gender Norms, India, Roads, Women Empowerment
    JEL: J16 O12
    Date: 2023
  6. By: Michael G. Mueller-Smith; Benjamin Pyle; Caroline Walker
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of adult prosecution on recidivism and employment trajectories for adolescent, first-time felony defendants. We use extensive linked Criminal Justice Admin- istrative Record System and socio-economic data from Wayne County, Michigan (Detroit). Using the discrete age of majority rule and a regression discontinuity design, we find that adult prosecution reduces future criminal charges over 5 years by 0.48 felony cases (↓ 20%) while also worsening labor market outcomes: 0.76 fewer employers (↓ 19%) and $674 fewer earnings (↓ 21%) per year. We develop a novel econometric framework that combines standard regression discontinuity methods with predictive machine learning models to identify mechanism-specific treatment effects that underpin the overall impact of adult prosecution. We leverage these estimates to consider four policy counterfactuals: (1) raising the age of majority, (2) increasing adult dismissals to match the juvenile disposition rates, (3) eliminating adult incarceration, and (4) expanding juvenile record sealing opportunities to teenage adult defendants. All four scenarios generate positive returns for government budgets. When accounting for impacts to defendants as well as victim costs borne by society stemming from increases in recidivism, we find positive social returns for juvenile record sealing expansions and dismissing marginal adult charges; raising the age of majority breaks even. Eliminating prison for first-time adult felony defendants, however, increases net social costs. Policymakers may still find this attractive if they are willing to value beneficiaries (taxpayers and defendants) slightly higher (124%) than potential victims.
    JEL: C36 C45 J24 K14 K42
    Date: 2023–08
  7. By: Piasenti, Stefano (Humboldt University); Valente, Marica (University of Innsbruck); Van Veldhuizen, Roel (Department of Economics, Lund University); Pfeifer, Gregor (University of Sydney)
    Abstract: How do men and women differ in their persistence after experiencing failure in a competitive environment? We tackle this question by combining a large online experiment (N=2, 086) with machine learning. We find that when losing is unequivocally due to merit, both men and women exhibit a significant decrease in subsequent tournament entry. However, when the prior tournament is unfair, i.e., a loss is no longer necessarily based on merit, women are more discouraged than men. These results suggest that transparent meritocratic criteria may play a key role in preventing women from falling behind after experiencing a loss.
    Keywords: Competitiveness; Gender; Fairness; Machine learning; Online experiment
    JEL: C14 C90 D91 J16
    Date: 2023–08–14

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