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Addressing the Needs of Underprepared Students in Higher Education: Does College Remediation Work?

  • Eric P. Bettinger
  • Bridget Terry Long

Each year, thousands graduate high school academically underprepared for college. Many must take remedial or developmental postsecondary coursework, and there is a growing debate about the effectiveness of such programs. This paper examines the effects of remediation using a unique data set of over 28,000 students. To account for selection biases, the paper implements an instrumental variables strategy based on variation in placement policies and the importance of proximity in college choice. The results suggest that students in remediation are more likely to persist in college in comparison to students with similar backgrounds who were not required to take the courses.

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File URL: http://jhr.uwpress.org/cgi/reprint/44/3/736
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Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

Volume (Year): 44 (2009)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:44:y:2009:i3:p736-771
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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  1. Christopher Avery & Thomas J. Kane, 2004. "Student Perceptions of College Opportunities. The Boston COACH Program," NBER Chapters, in: College Choices: The Economics of Where to Go, When to Go, and How to Pay For It, pages 355-394 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Bridget Terry Long, 2003. "Does the Format of a Financial Aid Program Matter? The Effect of State In-Kind Tuition Subsidies," NBER Working Papers 9720, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. David Card, 1993. "Using Geographic Variation in College Proximity to Estimate the Return to Schooling," Working Papers 696, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
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