Does Examination Hell Pay Off? A Cost-Benefit Analysis of "Ronin" and College Education in Japan
AbstractCollege-bound students in Japan undergo a process of intense preparation known as examination hell. An extreme manifestation of examination hell is the ronin phenomenon. Typically thirty percent of students choose the ronin option under which they spend years in addition to high school preparing for the next yearfs college entrance examinations. Using the mean scores of the entrance examinations as a measure of college quality, I find that college quality significantly improves the internal rate of return (IRR) to college education among the sample of male graduates in Japan. Ronin increases earnings indirectly by improving the quality of the college attended. I also show that the IRR with respect to ronin is one of diminishing returns. On average, the number of ronin years which maximizes the IRR is found to be somewhere between one and two years.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Stockholm School of Economics in its series Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance with number 346.
Length: 30 pages
Date of creation: 30 Nov 1999
Date of revision: 22 Aug 2000
Publication status: Published in Economics of Education Review, 2007, pages 271-284.
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More information through EDIRC
Human capital formation; economics of education; examination hell; ronin; cost-benefit analysis;
Other versions of this item:
- Ono, Hiroshi, 2007. "Does examination hell pay off ? A cost-benefit analysis of "ronin" and college education in Japan," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 271-284, June.
- I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
- J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
- J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2000-01-24 (All new papers)
- NEP-EDU-2000-01-17 (Education)
- NEP-HIS-2000-01-24 (Business, Economic & Financial History)
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