IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Do Peer Groups Matter? Peer Group versus Schooling Effects on Academic Attainment


  • Donald Robertson

    (University of Cambridge)

  • James Symons

    (University College London)


This paper estimates an educational production function. Educational attainment is a function of peer group, parental input and schooling. Conventional measures of school quality are not good predictors for academic attainment, once we control for peer group effects; parental qualities also have strong effects on academic attainment. This academic attainment is a then a key determinant of subsequent labour market success, as measured by earnings. The main methodological innovation in this paper is the nomination of a set of instruments, very broad regions of birth, which, as a whole, pass close scrutiny for validity and permit unbiased estimation of the production function. Copyright The London School of Economics and Political Science 2003

Suggested Citation

  • Donald Robertson & James Symons, 2003. "Do Peer Groups Matter? Peer Group versus Schooling Effects on Academic Attainment," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 70(277), pages 31-53, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:econom:v:70:y:2003:i:277:p:31-53

    Download full text from publisher

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Joseph G. Altonji & Thomas A. Dunn, 1995. "The Effects of School and Family Characteristics on the Return to Education," NBER Working Papers 5072, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Robertson, Donald & Symons, James, 1990. "The Occupational Choice of British Children," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(402), pages 828-841, September.
    3. Donald Robertson & James Symons, 2003. "Self-selection in the state school system," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(3), pages 259-272.
    4. Betts, Julian R, 1995. "Does School Quality Matter? Evidence from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(2), pages 231-250, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:econom:v:70:y:2003:i:277:p:31-53. 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: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.