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Classroom grade composition and pupil achievement

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This paper exploits discontinuous grade mixing rules in Norwegian junior high schools to estimate how classroom grade composition affects pupil achievement. Pupils in mixed grade classrooms are found to outperform pupils in single grade classrooms. This finding is driven by pupils benefiting from sharing the classroom with more mature peers from higher grades. The presence of lower grade peers is detrimental for achievement. Pupils can therefore benefit from de-tracking by grade, but the effects depend crucially on how the classroom is balanced in terms of lower and higher grades. These results reconcile the contradictory findings in the literature.

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File URL: http://www.ssb.no/a/publikasjoner/pdf/DP/dp722.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Research Department of Statistics Norway in its series Discussion Papers with number 722.

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Date of creation: Dec 2012
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Handle: RePEc:ssb:dispap:722

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Keywords: educational production; combination classes; class size; peer effects;

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  7. M. Daniele Paserman & Victor Lavy & Analia Schlosser, 2011. "“Inside the Black Box of Ability Peer Effects: Evidence from Variation in the Proportion of Low Achievers in the Classroom”," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2011-044, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  8. Hægeland, Torbjørn & Raaum, Oddbjørn & Salvanes, Kjell G., 2012. "Pennies from heaven? Using exogenous tax variation to identify effects of school resources on pupil achievement," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(5), pages 601-614.
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  15. Fredriksson, Peter & Öckert, Björn, 2005. "Is Early Learning Really More Productive? The Effect of School Starting Age on School and Labor Market Performance," IZA Discussion Papers 1659, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  16. Victor Lavy & Analía Schlosser, 2007. "Mechanisms and Impacts of Gender Peer Effects at School," NBER Working Papers 13292, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Miguel Urquiola & Eric Verhoogen, 2009. "Class-Size Caps, Sorting, and the Regression-Discontinuity Design," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(1), pages 179-215, March.
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