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University Differences in the Graduation of Minorities in STEM Fields: Evidence from California

Author

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  • Peter Arcidiacono
  • Esteban M. Aucejo
  • V. Joseph Hotz

Abstract

We examine differences in minority science graduation rates among University of California campuses when racial preferences were in place. Less prepared minorities at higher ranked campuses had lower persistence rates in science and took longer to graduate. We estimate a model of students' college major choice where net returns of a science major differ across campuses and student preparation. We find less prepared minority students at top ranked campuses would have higher science graduation rates had they attended lower ranked campuses. Better matching of science students to universities by preparation and providing information about students' prospects in different major-university combinations could increase minority science graduation. (JEL D14, E23, E32, E43, E52, E61, E62)

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Arcidiacono & Esteban M. Aucejo & V. Joseph Hotz, 2016. "University Differences in the Graduation of Minorities in STEM Fields: Evidence from California," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(3), pages 525-562, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:106:y:2016:i:3:p:525-62
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.20130626
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Cited by:

    1. Barron, Kai & Gravert, Christina, 2018. "Confidence and Career Choices: An Experiment," Working Papers in Economics 715, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
    2. David L. Sjoquist & John V. Winters, 2015. "State Merit Aid Programs and College Major: A Focus on STEM," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(4), pages 973-1006.
    3. Joshua D. Angrist & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 2017. "Undergraduate Econometrics Instruction: Through Our Classes, Darkly," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 31(2), pages 125-144, Spring.
    4. Hill, Andrew J., 2017. "State affirmative action bans and STEM degree completions," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 31-40.
    5. Ralph Stinebrickner & Todd R. Stinebrickner, 2014. "A Major in Science? Initial Beliefs and Final Outcomes for College Major and Dropout," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 81(1), pages 426-472.
    6. Osikominu, Aderonke & Pfeifer, Gregor, 2018. "Perceived Wages and the Gender Gap in STEM Fields," IZA Discussion Papers 11321, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. David Sjoquist & John Winters, 2015. "The effect of Georgia’s HOPE scholarship on college major: a focus on STEM," IZA Journal of Labor Economics, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-29, December.
    8. De Donato, Andrew & Thomas, James, 2017. "The effects of Greek affiliation on academic performance," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 41-51.
    9. Winters, John V., 2014. "STEM graduates, human capital externalities, and wages in the U.S," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 190-198.
    10. Marta De Philippis, 2016. "STEM Graduates and Secondary School Curriculum: Does Early Exposure to Science Matter?," CEP Discussion Papers dp1443, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    11. Peter Arcidiacono & Cory Koedel, 2014. "Race and College Success: Evidence from Missouri," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 20-57, July.
    12. Salvador Contreras, 2016. "For Economic Advantage or Something Else? A Case for Racial Identification Switching," The Review of Black Political Economy, Springer;National Economic Association, vol. 43(3), pages 301-323, December.
    13. John V. Winters, 2017. "Do Native STEM Graduates Increase Innovation? Evidence from U.S. Metropolitan Areas," Economics Working Paper Series 1714, Oklahoma State University, Department of Economics and Legal Studies in Business.
    14. Bertoni, Marco & Gibbons, Stephen & Silva, Olmo, 2017. "School Choice during a Period of Radical School Reform: Evidence from the Academy Programme," IZA Discussion Papers 11162, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    15. Rodney J. Andrews & Scott A. Imberman & Michael F. Lovenheim, 2016. "Recruiting and Supporting Low-Income, High-Achieving Students at Flagship Universities," NBER Working Papers 22260, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Landaud, Fanny & Ly, Son-Thierry & Maurin, Eric, 2016. "Competitive Schools and the Gender Gap in the Choice of Field of Study," CEPR Discussion Papers 11411, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    17. Barron, Kai & Gravert, Christina, 2018. "Beliefs and actions: How a shift in confidence affects choices," MPRA Paper 84743, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Marco Bertoni & Stephen Gibbons & Olmo Silva, 2017. "What’s in a Name? Expectations, Heuristics and Choice During a Period of Radical School Reform," CEP Discussion Papers dp1477, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    19. Peter Arcidiacono & Michael Lovenheim, 2016. "Affirmative Action and the Quality-Fit Trade-Off," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 54(1), pages 3-51, March.
    20. Christopher R. Walters, 2014. "The Demand for Effective Charter Schools," NBER Working Papers 20640, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    22. Joshua Angrist & David Autor & Sally Hudson & Amanda Pallais, 2014. "Leveling Up: Early Results from a Randomized Evaluation of Post-Secondary Aid," NBER Working Papers 20800, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    23. Winters, John V., 2014. "Foreign and Native-Born STEM Graduates and Innovation Intensity in the United States," IZA Discussion Papers 8575, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    24. Hinrichs, Peter, 2014. "Affirmative action bans and college graduation rates," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 43-52.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • E23 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Production
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E43 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E61 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Policy Objectives; Policy Designs and Consistency; Policy Coordination
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy

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