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Recommendation, class repeating, and children's ability: German school tracking experiences


  • Carsten Ochsen


While the 2006 Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) assesses the average ability of German primary school students as being higher than average, the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) studies (OECD, 2000, 2003, 2006) ranks German secondary school students at a considerably lower level. This article examines whether a teacher's recommendation for the secondary school track and class repeating are causes for these ability differences. According to the estimates, failures as a result of teachers' recommendations given at the end of primary school are an important reason for the differences between the two types of studies. Being required to repeat a school class amplifies the inefficient management of children's abilities.

Suggested Citation

  • Carsten Ochsen, 2011. "Recommendation, class repeating, and children's ability: German school tracking experiences," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(27), pages 4127-4133.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:43:y:2011:i:27:p:4127-4133
    DOI: 10.1080/00036846.2010.485929

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Annabelle Krause & Ulf Rinne & Simone Schüller, 2015. "Kick It Like Özil? Decomposing the Native-Migrant Education Gap," International Migration Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(3), pages 757-789, September.
    2. Davide Azzolini & Loris Vergolini, 2014. "Tracking, Inequality and Education Policy. Looking for a Recipe for the Italian Case," FBK-IRVAPP Working Papers 2014-08, Research Institute for the Evaluation of Public Policies (IRVAPP), Bruno Kessler Foundation.
    3. Kimura, Marlies & Ochsen, Carsten, 2014. "Student assessment and grade retention: evidence from a natural experiment," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100546, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy
    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics


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