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Does the timing of tracking affect higher education completion?

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  • van Elk, Roel
  • van der Steeg, Marc
  • Webbink, Dinand
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    Abstract

    This paper investigates the effect of the timing of tracking on completion of higher education by exploiting unique variation from the Dutch education system. At the age of 12 Dutch students can enrol in tracked schools or in comprehensive schools. The comprehensive schools postpone enrolment into tracked classes by one or two years. OLS- and IV-estimates, using regional variation in the supply of schools as instruments, show that early tracking has a detrimental effect on completion of higher education for students at the margin of the Dutch high and low tracks. The negative effects of early tracking are larger for students with relatively high ability or students with a higher socioeconomic background. In addition, we find no negative effects of comprehensive classes on higher ability students. These results suggest that increasing participation in comprehensive classes would increase graduation from higher education.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics of Education Review.

    Volume (Year): 30 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 5 (October)
    Pages: 1009-1021

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:30:y:2011:i:5:p:1009-1021

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/econedurev

    Related research

    Keywords: Early tracking Higher education graduation;

    References

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    1. Eric A. Hanushek & Ludger Wößmann, 2005. "Does Educational Tracking Affect Performance and Inequality? Differences-in-Differences Evidence across Countries," Ifo Working Paper Series Ifo Working Paper No. 1, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
    2. Giorgio Brunello & Daniele Checchi, 2007. "Does school tracking affect equality of opportunity? New international evidence," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 22, pages 781-861, October.
    3. Pekkarinen, Tuomas & Uusitalo, Roope & Kerr, Sari Pekkala, 2009. "School Tracking and Development of Cognitive Skills," IZA Discussion Papers 4058, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    18. Eric A. Hanushek, 2010. "The Economic Value of Higher Teacher Quality," NBER Working Papers 16606, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:
    1. Korthals R.A., 2013. "Selection and tracking in secondary education; A cross country analysis of student performance and educational opportunities," Research Memorandum 054, Maastricht University, Graduate School of Business and Economics (GSBE).
    2. Heineck, Guido & Wölfel, Oliver, 2010. "Parental Risk Attitudes and Children's Secondary School Track Choice," IZA Discussion Papers 5197, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Bauer, Philipp C. & Riphahn, Regina T., 2013. "Institutional determinants of intergenerational education transmission — Comparing alternative mechanisms for natives and immigrants," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 110-122.

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