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Access, Choice and Participation in Higher Education

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  • Steve Gibbons
  • Anna Vignoles

Abstract

Geographical distance between parental home and college poses a potential barrier to higher education entry, and could be a deciding factor when choosing between institutions. Some students may be constrained in their education choices because they cannot afford to leave home, or have personal or cultural reasons to remain close to their family. This paper provides quantitative evidence on these issues using administrative data on a cohort of university entrants in England, which includes both individual and school level information. Our findings are that geographical distance has little or no impact on the decision to participate, but has a strong influence on institutional choice. Institution attendance probabilities fall with distance from home, with an elasticity of -1. Small, but behaviourally important differences between demographic groups have implications for the sorting of students across institutions. There are also implications for the spatial distribution of human capital, because the quality of students' education is linked to the quality of institutions that are close to home.

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File URL: http://cee.lse.ac.uk/ceedps/ceedp101.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE in its series CEE Discussion Papers with number 0101.

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Date of creation: Jan 2009
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Handle: RePEc:cep:ceedps:0101

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Web page: http://cee.lse.ac.uk/publications.htm

Related research

Keywords: Higher Education; choice; migration;

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References

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  1. Gobillon, Laurent & Selod, Harris & Zenou, Yves, 2005. "The mechanisms of spatial mismatch," CEPR Discussion Papers 5346, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Jo Blanden & Alissa Goodman & Paul Gregg & Stephen Machin, 2002. "Changes in intergenerational mobility in Britain," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19507, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  3. Anh Ngoc Nguyen & Jim Taylor, 2003. "Post-high school choices: New evidence from a multinomial logit model," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 287-306, 05.
  4. Spiess, C. Katharina & Wrohlich, Katharina, 2010. "Does distance determine who attends a university in Germany?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 470-479, June.
  5. N Powdthavee & A Vignoles, 2008. "The Socio-Economic Gap in University Drop Out," Discussion Papers 08/23, Department of Economics, University of York.
  6. Frenette, Marc, 2003. "Access to College and University: Does Distance Matter?," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2003201e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
  7. Anne-Celia Disdier & Keith Head, 2008. "The puzzling persistence of the distance effect on bilateral trade," Working Papers 21709, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, France.
  8. Iftikhar Hussain & Sandra McNally & Shqiponja Telhaj, 2009. "University quality and graduate wages in the UK," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 25486, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  9. Pierre-Philippe Combes & Miren Lafourcade, 2005. "Transport costs: measures, determinants, and regional policy implications for France," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(3), pages 319-349, June.
  10. Alessandra Faggian & Philip McCann & Stephen Sheppard, 2006. "An analysis of ethnic differences in UK graduate migration behaviour," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, vol. 40(2), pages 461-471, June.
  11. Geraint Johnes & Robert McNabb, 2004. "Never Give up on the Good Times: Student Attrition in the UK," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 66(1), pages 23-47, 02.
  12. Marc Frenette, 2006. "Too Far to Go On? Distance to School and University Participation," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(1), pages 31-58.
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Cited by:
  1. Gibbons, Stephen & Vignoles, Anna, 2012. "Geography, choice and participation in higher education in England," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 98-113.
  2. CESI, Berardino & PAOLINI, dimitri, 2012. "Peer group and distance: when widening university participation is better," CORE Discussion Papers 2012042, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).

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