Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Money, mentoring and making friends: the impact of a multidimensional access program on student performance

Contents:

Author Info

  • Kevin Denny

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College Dublin)

  • Orla Doyle
  • Patricia O'Reilly
  • Vincent O'Sullivan

Abstract

There is a well established socioeconomic gradient in educational attainment in all countries: young people from a low socioeconomic status (SES) will, on average, receive less education and do less well at school. While this is true virtually everywhere, this SES gradient is noticeably higher in Ireland compared to other OECD countries despite much effort in recent decades to address this inequality. This study evaluates a university access program in Ireland that provides financial, academic and social support to low SES students both prior to and after entry to university. It uses a natural experiment involving the gradual roll-out of the program to identify the effect of the program. The program has parallels with US Affirmative Action programs, although preferential treatment in this case is based on SES rather than ethnicity. Evaluating the effectiveness of programs targeting disadvantaged students in Ireland is particularly salient given the high rate of return to education and the lack of intergenerational mobility in educational attainment. Overall, we find positive treatment effects on first year exam performance, progression to second year and final year graduation rates, with the impact often stronger for higher ability students. We find similar patterns of results for students that entered through the regular system and the 'affirmative action' group i.e. the students that entering with lower high school grades. The program affects both male and female students, albeit in different ways. The study is unable to identify which specific component of the treatment is responsible for the effects but we find no evidence that changes in the financial support have an effect on student outcomes. This study suggests that access programs can be an effective means of improving academic outcomes for socio-economically disadvantaged students.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.ifs.org.uk/wps/wp1012.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for Fiscal Studies in its series IFS Working Papers with number W10/12.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: May 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:10/12

Contact details of provider:
Postal: The Institute for Fiscal Studies 7 Ridgmount Street LONDON WC1E 7AE
Phone: (+44) 020 7291 4800
Fax: (+44) 020 7323 4780
Email:
Web page: http://www.ifs.org.uk
More information through EDIRC

Order Information:
Postal: The Institute for Fiscal Studies 7 Ridgmount Street LONDON WC1E 7AE
Email:

Related research

Keywords: Education inequality; Access programs; Natural experiment; Economics of education;

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Isobel Claire Gormley & Thomas Brendan Murphy, 2006. "Analysis of Irish third-level college applications data," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 169(2), pages 361-379.
  2. Roland G. Fryer, Jr. & Glenn C. Loury, 2005. "Affirmative Action and Its Mythology," NBER Working Papers 11464, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Pietro Garibaldi & Francesco Giavazzi & Andrea Ichino & Enrico Rettore, 2007. "College Cost and Time to Complete a Degree: Evidence from Tuition Discontinuities," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 38, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  4. Victor Lavy & Analia Schlosser, 2004. "Targeted Remedial Education for Under-Performing Teenagers: Costs and Benefits," NBER Working Papers 10575, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Massimiliano BRATTI & Robin NAYLOR & Jeremy SMITH, 2008. "Heterogeneities in the returns to degrees: evidence from the British cohort study 1970," Departmental Working Papers 2008-40, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
  6. Philip Oreopoulos & Daniel Lang & Joshua Angrist, 2009. "Incentives and Services for College Achievement: Evidence from a Randomized Trial," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 136-63, January.
  7. Monks, James, 2009. "The impact of merit-based financial aid on college enrollment: A field experiment," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 99-106, February.
  8. Judith Scott-Clayton, 2011. "On Money and Motivation: A Quasi-Experimental Analysis of Financial Incentives for College Achievement," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 46(3), pages 614-646.
  9. Ficano, Carlena Cochi, 2012. "Peer effects in college academic outcomes – Gender matters!," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 1102-1115.
  10. Susan M. Dynarski, 2003. "Does Aid Matter? Measuring the Effect of Student Aid on College Attendance and Completion," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 279-288, March.
  11. James Heckman & Pedro Carneiro, 2003. "Human Capital Policy," NBER Working Papers 9495, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Cunha, Flavio & Heckman, James J., 2007. "The Technology of Skill Formation," IZA Discussion Papers 2550, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. David Myers & Robert Olsen & Neil Seftor & Julie Young & Christina Tuttle, 2004. "The Impacts of Regular Upward Bound: Results from the Third Follow-Up Data Collection," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 4029, Mathematica Policy Research.
  14. Susan Dynarski, 2000. "Hope for Whom? Financial Aid for the Middle Class and Its Impact on College Attendance," NBER Working Papers 7756, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Dynarski, Susan, 2000. "Hope for Whom? Financial Aid for the Middle Class and Its Impact on College Attendance," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 53(n. 3), pages 629-62, September.
  16. Kevin Denny, 2011. "The effect of abolishing university tuition costs: evidence from Ireland," IFS Working Papers W11/05, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  17. Susan Dynarski, 2005. "Building the Stock of College-Educated Labor," NBER Working Papers 11604, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Walker, Ian & Zhu, Yu, 2010. "Differences by Degree: Evidence of the Net Financial Rates of Return to Undergraduate Study for England and Wales," IZA Discussion Papers 5254, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  19. Jaeger, David A & Page, Marianne E, 1996. "Degrees Matter: New Evidence on Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(4), pages 733-40, November.
  20. Trostel, Philip & Walker, Ian & Woolley, Paul, 2002. "Estimates of the economic return to schooling for 28 countries," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 1-16, February.
  21. Callan, Tim & Harmon, Colm, 1999. "The economic return to schooling in Ireland," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(4), pages 543-550, November.
  22. David Card, 2000. "Estimating the Return to Schooling: Progress on Some Persistent Econometric Problems," NBER Working Papers 7769, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Juerg Schweri, 2004. "Does it pay to be a good student? Results from the Swiss graduate labour market," Diskussionsschriften dp0405, Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft.
  24. Jeremy P. Smith & Robin A. Naylor, 2001. "Dropping out of university: A statistical analysis of the probability of withdrawal for UK university students," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 164(2), pages 389-405.
  25. Ethel B. Jones & John D. Jackson, 1990. "College Grades and Labor Market Rewards," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(2), pages 253-266.
  26. Anderson, Michael L., 2008. "Multiple Inference and Gender Differences in the Effects of Early Intervention: A Reevaluation of the Abecedarian, Perry Preschool, and Early Training Projects," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 103(484), pages 1481-1495.
  27. Christopher Cornwell & David B. Mustard & Deepa J. Sridhar, 2006. "The Enrollment Effects of Merit-Based Financial Aid: Evidence from Georgia's HOPE Program," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(4), pages 761-786, October.
  28. Thomas J. Kane, 2003. "A Quasi-Experimental Estimate of the Impact of Financial Aid on College-Going," NBER Working Papers 9703, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  29. Heckman, James J. & Moon, Seong Hyeok & Pinto, Rodrigo & Savelyev, Peter A. & Yavitz, Adam, 2010. "The rate of return to the HighScope Perry Preschool Program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(1-2), pages 114-128, February.
  30. Alon, Sigal, 2007. "The influence of financial aid in leveling group differences in graduating from elite institutions," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 296-311, June.
  31. David Deming & Susan Dynarski, 2009. "Into College, Out of Poverty? Policies to Increase the Postsecondary Attainment of the Poor," NBER Working Papers 15387, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  32. Lorraine Dearden & Leslie McGranahan & Barbara Sianesi, 2004. "The Role of Credit Constraints in Educational Choices: Evidence from NCDS and BCS70," CEE Discussion Papers 0048, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Denny, Kevin, 2014. "The effect of abolishing university tuition costs: Evidence from Ireland," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(C), pages 26-33.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:10/12. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Stephanie Seavers).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.