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Are Big-Time Sports a Threat to Student Achievement?

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  • Jason M. Lindo
  • Isaac D. Swensen
  • Glen R. Waddell

Abstract

We consider the relationship between collegiate football success and non-athlete student performance. We find that the team's success significantly reduces male grades relative to female grades, and only in fall quarters, which coincides with the football season. Using survey data, we find that males are more likely than females to increase alcohol consumption, decrease studying, and increase partying in response to the success of the team. Yet, females also report that their behavior is affected by athletic success, suggesting that their performance is likely impaired but that this effect is masked by the practice of grade curving. (JEL I21, L83)

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Journal: Applied Economics.

Volume (Year): 4 (2012)
Issue (Month): 4 (October)
Pages: 254-74

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aejapp:v:4:y:2012:i:4:p:254-74

Note: DOI: 10.1257/app.4.4.254
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  1. Scott E. Carrell & Mark Hoekstra & James E. West, 2010. "Does Drinking Impair College Performance? Evidence from a Regression Discontinuity Approach," NBER Working Papers 16330, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Susan Dynarski, 2005. "Building the Stock of College-Educated Labor," NBER Working Papers 11604, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Lindo, Jason M. & Swensen, Isaac D. & Waddell, Glen R., 2013. "Alcohol and student performance: Estimating the effect of legal access," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 22-32.
  4. Goldin, Claudia & Kuziemko, Ilyana & Katz, Lawrence, 2006. "The Homecoming of American College Women: The Reversal of the College Gender Gap," Scholarly Articles 2962611, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Scott E. Carrell & Marianne E. Page & James E. West, 2010. "Sex and Science: How Professor Gender Perpetuates the Gender Gap," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 125(3), pages 1101-1144, August.
  6. Todd Stinebrickner & Ralph Stinebrickner, 2001. "Time Use and College Outcomes," University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity Working Papers 20012, University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity.
  7. David Card & Gordon B. Dahl, 2011. "Family Violence and Football: The Effect of Unexpected Emotional Cues on Violent Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(1), pages 103-143.
  8. Clotfelter,Charles T., 2011. "Big-Time Sports in American Universities," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9781107004344, Fall.
  9. Jason M. Lindo & Nicholas J. Sanders & Philip Oreopoulos, 2010. "Ability, Gender, and Performance Standards: Evidence from Academic Probation," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 95-117, April.
  10. Foster, Gigi, 2006. "It's not your peers, and it's not your friends: Some progress toward understanding the educational peer effect mechanism," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1455-1475, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Lindo, Jason M. & Swensen, Isaac D. & Waddell, Glen R., 2013. "Alcohol and student performance: Estimating the effect of legal access," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 22-32.
  2. Doerrenberg, Philipp & Siegloch, Sebastian, 2014. "Is Soccer Good for You? The Motivational Impact of Big Sporting Events on the Unemployed," IZA Discussion Papers 7890, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Rhodes, M. Taylor, 2013. "Pigskin, Tailgating and Pollution: Estimating the Environmental Impacts of Sporting Events," Working Papers 13-19, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics.

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