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Using Siblings to Investigate the Effects of Family Structure on Educational Attainment

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  • G. D. Sandefur
  • T. Wells
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    Abstract

    This paper examines the effects of family structure on educational attainment after controlling for common family influences, observed and unobserved, using data from siblings. The use of sibling data permits us to examine whether the apparent effects of family structure are due to unmeasured characteristics of families that are common to siblings. The data come from pairs of siblings in the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, 1979–1992. The results suggest that taking into account the unmeasured family characteristics yields estimates of the effects of family structure on educational attainment that are smaller, but still statistically significant, than estimates based on analyses that do not take unmeasured family influences into account.

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    File URL: http://www.irp.wisc.edu/publications/dps/pdfs/dp114497.pdf
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    Paper provided by University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty in its series Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers with number 1144-97.

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    Handle: RePEc:wop:wispod:1144-97

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    1. Roger Wojtkiewicz, 1993. "Simplicity and complexity in the effects of parental structure on high school graduation," Demography, Springer, vol. 30(4), pages 701-717, November.
    2. Manski, C.F. & Sandefur, G.D. & Mclanahan, S. & Powers, D., 1990. "Alternative Estimates Of The Effect Of Family Stucture During Adolescence On Hight School Graduation," Working papers 90-31, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
    3. R. A. Wojtkiewicz, . "Simplicity and complexity in the effects of parental structure on high school graduation," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 993-93, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
    4. R. Haurin & Frank Mott, 1990. "Adolescent sexual activity in the family context: The impact of older siblings," Demography, Springer, vol. 27(4), pages 537-557, November.
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    Cited by:
    1. Antman, Francisca M., 2011. "The intergenerational effects of paternal migration on schooling and work: What can we learn from children's time allocations?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 200-208, November.
    2. Corak, Miles, 2001. "Death and Divorce: The Long-Term Consequences of Parental Loss on Adolescents," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(3), pages 682-715, July.
    3. Heisz, Andrew & Corak, Miles, 1999. "Deces et divorce : les consequences a long terme de la perte parentale chez les adolescents," Direction des etudes analytiques : documents de recherche 1999135f, Statistics Canada, Direction des etudes analytiques.
    4. Anna Sanz De Galdeano, 2004. "Does Parental Divorce Affect Adolescents' Cognitive Development? Evidence from Longitudinal Data," CSEF Working Papers 128, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
    5. Terry-Ann Craigie, 2008. "Effects of Paternal Presence and Family Stability on Child Cognitive Performance," Working Papers 1015, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing..
    6. Eirik Evenhouse & Siobhan Reilly, 2000. "Is the Wicked Stepmother Just a Fairytale?," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0049, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.

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