IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Early education and children's outcomes: low long do the impacts last?

Listed author(s):
  • Alissa Goodman


    (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

  • Barbara Sianesi


    (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

We evaluate the effects of undergoing any early education (before the compulsory starting age of 5) and of pre-school on a cohort of British children born in 1958. In contrast to most available studies, we are able to assess whether any effects on cognition and socialisation are long-lasting, as well as to estimate their net impact on subsequent educational attainment and labour market performance. Controlling for a particularly rich set of child, parental, family and neighbourhood characteristics, we find some positive and long-lasting effects from early education. Specifically, pre-compulsory education (preschool or school entry prior to age 5) was found to yield large improvements in cognitive tests at age 7, which, though diminished in size, remained significant throughout the schooling years, up to age 16. By contrast, attendance of pre-school (nursery or playgroup) was found to yield a positive but short-lived impact on test scores. The effects on socialisation appear to be more mixed: we found some positive, though short-lasting, effects of pre-compulsory education on teachers’ reports of social adjustment (only at age 7); on the other hand, we found some adverse behavioural effects according to parental reports at age 7 which persisted up to age 11. In adulthood, pre-compulsory education was found to increase the probabilities of obtaining qualifications and of being employed at age 33. For both pre-compulsory education and pre-school per se, we found evidence of a marginally significant 3-4 per cent wage gain at age 33.

To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
1. Check below under "Related research" 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.

Article provided by Institute for Fiscal Studies in its journal Fiscal Studies.

Volume (Year): 26 (2005)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 513-548

in new window

Handle: RePEc:ifs:fistud:v:26:y:2005:i:4:p:513-548
Contact details of provider: Postal:
The Institute for Fiscal Studies 7 Ridgmount Street LONDON WC1E 7AE

Phone: (+44) 020 7291 4800
Fax: (+44) 020 7323 4780
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Postal: The Institute for Fiscal Studies 7 Ridgmount Street LONDON WC1E 7AE

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ifs:fistud:v:26:y:2005:i:4:p:513-548. 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: (Emma Hyman)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.