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Widening Participation in Higher Education: Analysis Using Linked Administrative Data

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Author Info

  • Chowdry, Haroon

    ()
    (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London)

  • Crawford, Claire

    ()
    (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London)

  • Dearden, Lorraine

    ()
    (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London)

  • Goodman, Alissa

    ()
    (Institute for Fiscal Studies, London)

  • Vignoles, Anna

    ()
    (University of Cambridge)

Abstract

This paper makes use of newly linked administrative data to better understand the determinants of higher education participation amongst individuals from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds. It is unique in being able to follow two cohorts of students in England – those who took GCSEs in 2001-02 and 2002-03 – from age 11 to age 20. The findings suggest that while there remain large raw gaps in HE participation (and participation at high-status universities) by socio-economic status, these differences are substantially reduced once controls for prior attainment are included. Moreover, these findings hold for both state and private school students. This suggests that poor attainment in secondary schools is more important in explaining lower HE participation rates amongst students from disadvantaged backgrounds than barriers arising at the point of entry into HE. These findings highlight the need for earlier policy intervention to raise HE participation rates amongst disadvantaged youth.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4991.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2010
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, Series A (Statistics in Society), 2013, 176 (2), 431–457
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4991

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Keywords: higher education; widening participation; socio-economic gap;

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References

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  1. Philippe Belley & Lance Lochner, 2008. "The Changing Role of Family Income and Ability in Determining Educational Achievement," University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity Working Papers 20081, University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity.
  2. Jo Blanden & Paul Gregg, 2004. "Family income and educational attainment: a review of approaches and evidence for Britain," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19461, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  3. Vignoles Anna F & Powdthavee Nattavudh, 2009. "The Socioeconomic Gap in University Dropouts," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 9(1), pages 1-36, April.
  4. Flavio Cunha & James Heckman, 2007. "The Technology of Skill Formation," NBER Working Papers 12840, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Jo Blanden & Stephen Machin, 2013. "Educational Inequality and The Expansion of UK Higher Education," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 60(5), pages 578-596, November.
  6. James Heckman & Pedro Carneiro, 2003. "Human Capital Policy," NBER Working Papers 9495, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Costas Meghir & Mårten Palme, 2005. "Educational Reform, Ability, and Family Background," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 414-424, March.
  8. Fernando Galindo-Rueda & Oscar Marcenaro & Anna Vignoles, 2004. "The Widening Socio-Economic Gap in UK Higher Education," CEE Discussion Papers 0044, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  9. Pedro Carneiro & James J. Heckman, 2002. "The Evidence on Credit Constraints in Post--secondary Schooling," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(482), pages 705-734, October.
  10. 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.
  11. Jo Blanden, 2004. "Family Income and Educational Attainment: A Review of Approaches and Evidence for Britain," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 20(2), pages 245-263, Summer.
  12. Cunha, Flavio & Heckman, James J. & Lochner, Lance & Masterov, Dimitriy V., 2005. "Interpreting the Evidence on Life Cycle Skill Formation," IZA Discussion Papers 1675, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. Graham Hobbs & Anna Vignoles, 2007. "Is Free School Meal Status a Valid Proxy for Socio-Economic Status (in Schools Research)?," CEE Discussion Papers 0084, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  14. Andrew Jenkins & Anna Vignoles & Alison Wolf & Fernando Galindo-Rueda, 2003. "The determinants and labour market effects of lifelong learning," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(16), pages 1711-1721.
  15. Steve Machin & Anna Vignoles, 2004. "Educational inequality: the widening socio-economic gap," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 25(2), pages 107-128, June.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Arnaud Chevalier & Colm Harmon & Vincent O'Sullivan & Ian Walker, 2005. "The impact of parental income and education on the schooling of their children," IFS Working Papers W05/05, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  2. Devereux, Paul J. & Fan, Wen, 2011. "Earnings returns to the British education expansion," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(6), pages 1153-1166.
  3. Matt Dickson, 2013. "The Causal Effect of Education on Wages Revisited," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 75(4), pages 477-498, 08.
  4. Arnaud Chevalier & Colm Harmon & Vincent O'Sullivan & Ian Walker, 2011. "The Impact of Parental Earnings and Education on the Schooling of Children," Working Papers 201112, Geary Institute, University College Dublin.
  5. Jake Anders, 2012. "What's the link between household income and going to university?," DoQSS Working Papers 12-01, Department of Quantitative Social Science - Institute of Education, University of London.
  6. Denny, Kevin, 2014. "The effect of abolishing university tuition costs: Evidence from Ireland," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(C), pages 26-33.
  7. Lorraine Dearden & Emla Fitzsimons & Gill Wyness, 2011. "The Impact of Tuition Fees and Support on University Participation in the UK," CEE Discussion Papers 0126, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  8. Flannery, Darragh & O’Donoghue, Cathal, 2013. "The demand for higher education: A static structural approach accounting for individual heterogeneity and nesting patterns," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 243-257.
  9. Jake Anders & John Micklewright, 2013. "Teenagers' expectations of applying to university: how do they change?," DoQSS Working Papers 13-13, Department of Quantitative Social Science - Institute of Education, University of London.

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