Are Computers Good for Children? The Effects of Home Computers on Educational Outcomes
Although computers are universal in the classroom, nearly twenty million children in the United States do not have computers in their homes. Surprisingly, only a few previous studies explore the role of home computers in the educational process. Home computers might be very useful for completing school assignments, but they might also represent a distraction for teenagers. We use several identification strategies and panel data from the two main U.S. datasets that include recent information on computer ownership among children -- the 2000-2003 CPS Computer and Internet Use Supplements (CIUS) matched to the CPS Basic Monthly Files and the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997 -- to explore the causal relationship between computer ownership and high school graduation and other educational outcomes. Teenagers who have access to home computers are 6 to 8 percentage points more likely to graduate from high school than teenagers who do not have home computers after controlling for individual, parental, and family characteristics. We generally find evidence of positive relationships between home computers and educational outcomes using several identification strategies, including controlling for typically unobservable home environment and extracurricular activities in the NLSY97, fixed effects models, instrumental variables, and including future computer ownership and falsification tests. Home computers may increase high school graduation by reducing non-productive activities, such as truancy and crime, among children in addition to making it easier to complete school assignments.
|Date of creation:||Mar 2008|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: +61 2 6125 3807|
Phone: +61 2 6125 3807
Fax: +61 2 6125 0744
Web page: http://rse.anu.edu.au/cepr.php
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Fairlie, Robert W., 2005.
"The effects of home computers on school enrollment,"
Economics of Education Review,
Elsevier, vol. 24(5), pages 533-547, October.
- Fairlie, Robert, 2014. "The Effects of Home Computers on School Enrollment," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt82w8v1m8, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
- Thomas Fuchs & Ludger Wößmann, 2005.
"Computers and Student Learning:Bivariate and Multivariate Evidence on the Availability and Use of Computers at Home and at School,"
Ifo Working Paper Series
Ifo Working Paper No. 8, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
- Thomas Fuchs & Ludger Wossmann, 2004. "Computers and student learning: bivariate and multivariate evidence on the availability and use of computers at home and at school," Brussels Economic Review, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles, vol. 47(3-4), pages 359-386.
- Thomas Fuchs & Ludger Woessmann, 2004. "Computers and Student Learning: Bivariate and Multivariate Evidence on the Availability and Use of Computers at Home and at School," CESifo Working Paper Series 1321, CESifo Group Munich.
- Richard Freeman, 2002.
"The Labour Market in the New Information Economy,"
CEP Discussion Papers
dp0558, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
- Richard B. Freeman, 2002. "The Labour Market in the New Information Economy," NBER Working Papers 9254, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Richard B. Freeman, 2002. "The labour market in the new information economy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20062, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
- John Schmitt & Jonathan Wadsworth, 2004.
"Is there an impact of household computer ownership on children's educational attainment in Britain?,"
LSE Research Online Documents on Economics
19978, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
- Schmitt, John & Wadsworth, Jonathan, 2006. "Is there an impact of household computer ownership on children's educational attainment in Britain?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(6), pages 659-673, December.
- John Schmitt & Jonathan Wadsworth, 2004. "Is There an Impact of Household Computer Ownership on Childrens Educational Attainment in Britain?," CEP Discussion Papers dp0625, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
- Goolsbee, Austan & Klenow, Peter J, 2002.
"Evidence on Learning and Network Externalities in the Diffusion of Home Computers,"
Journal of Law and Economics,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(2), pages 317-43, October.
- Austan Goolsbee & Peter J. Klenow, 1999. "Evidence on Learning and Network Externalities in the Diffusion of Home Computers," NBER Working Papers 7329, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Chuang, Hwei-Lin, 1997. "High school youths' dropout and re-enrollment behavior," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 171-186, April.
- Goldfarb, Avi & Prince, Jeff, 2008. "Internet adoption and usage patterns are different: Implications for the digital divide," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 2-15, March.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:auu:dpaper:576. 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: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.