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Does the early bird catch the worm?

In: The Economics of Education and Training

Author

Listed:
  • Patrick A. Puhani

    (University of Hannover
    University of St. Gallen
    IZA)

  • Andrea M. Weber

    (Darmstadt University of Technology)

Abstract

We estimate the effect of age of school entry on educational outcomes using two different data sets for Germany, sampling pupils at the end of primary school and in the middle of secondary school. Results are obtained based on instrumental variable estimation exploiting the exogenous variation in month of birth. We find robust and significant positive effects on educational outcomes for pupils who enter school at 7 instead of 6 years of age: test scores at the end of primary school increase by about 0.40 standard deviations and the probability to attend the highest secondary schooling track (Gymnasium) increases by about 12% points.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrick A. Puhani & Andrea M. Weber, 2008. "Does the early bird catch the worm?," Studies in Empirical Economics, in: Christian Dustmann & Bernd Fitzenberger & Stephen Machin (ed.), The Economics of Education and Training, pages 105-132, Springer.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:stecpp:978-3-7908-2022-5_6
    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-7908-2022-5_6
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Christian Dustmann, 2004. "Parental background, secondary school track choice, and wages," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(2), pages 209-230, April.
    2. Imbens, Guido W & Angrist, Joshua D, 1994. "Identification and Estimation of Local Average Treatment Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(2), pages 467-475, March.
    3. Stock, James H & Wright, Jonathan H & Yogo, Motohiro, 2002. "A Survey of Weak Instruments and Weak Identification in Generalized Method of Moments," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(4), pages 518-529, October.
    4. Janet Currie, 2001. "Early Childhood Education Programs," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 213-238, Spring.
    5. Fredriksson, Peter & Öckert, Björn, 2005. "Is Early Learning Really More Productive? The Effect of School Starting Age on School and Labor Market Performance," IZA Discussion Papers 1659, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    6. Edwin Leuven & Mikael Lindahl & Hessel Oosterbeek & Dinand Webbink, 2004. "New evidence on the effect of time in school on early achievement," HEW 0410001, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Education; Immigration; Policy; Identification;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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