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How Do College Students Form Expectations?

  • Basit Zafar

This study focuses on how college students form expectations about various major-specific outcomes. For this purpose, I collect a panel data set of Northwestern University undergraduates that contains their subjective expectations about major-specific outcomes. Although students tend to be overconfident about their future academic performance, they revise their expectations in expected ways. The updating process is found to be consistent with a Bayesian learning model. I show that learning plays a role in the decision to switch majors and that major switchers respond to information from their own major. I also present evidence that learning is general and not entirely major specific.

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/658091
Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/658091
Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

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Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Labor Economics.

Volume (Year): 29 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 301 - 348

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:doi:10.1086/658091
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JOLE/

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