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The Impact of Classroom Peer Groups on Pupil GCSE Results

Author

Listed:
  • Adele Atkinson
  • Simon Burgess
  • Paul Gregg
  • Carol Propper
  • Steven Proud

Abstract

The effect of a more able peer group on a child’s attainment is considered an integral part in estimating a pupil level educational production function. Examinations in England at age 16 are tiered according to ability, leading to a large stratification of pupils by ability. However, within tiers, there is a range of policies between schools regarding setting, ranging from credibly random to strict setting by results from examinations at age 14. We use this variation to estimate ordinary least squares (OLS) estimates, with school and teacher fixed effects, of the effect of a more able peer group using a subset of schools that has apparently random allocation of pupils. As a robustness test of the apparently random setting results, we use an instrumental variables (IV) methodology developed by Lefgren (2004b). We find significant, positive, and non-trivial effects of a more able peer group using both the OLS and IV estimations for English and mathematics.

Suggested Citation

  • Adele Atkinson & Simon Burgess & Paul Gregg & Carol Propper & Steven Proud, 2008. "The Impact of Classroom Peer Groups on Pupil GCSE Results," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 08/187, The Centre for Market and Public Organisation, University of Bristol, UK.
  • Handle: RePEc:bri:cmpowp:08/187
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    File URL: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/cmpo/publications/papers/2008/wp187.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Vincent Boucher & Yann Bramoullé & Habiba Djebbari & Bernard Fortin, 2014. "Do Peers Affect Student Achievement? Evidence From Canada Using Group Size Variation," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(1), pages 91-109, January.
    2. Silvia Mendolia & Alfredo R Paloyo & Ian Walker, 2018. "Heterogeneous effects of high school peers on educational outcomes," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(3), pages 613-634.
    3. Duncan McVicar, 2012. "Cross Country Estimates of Peer Effects in Adolescent Smoking Using IV and School Fixed Effects," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2012n07, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    4. Stephen L. Ross, 2009. "Social Interactions within Cities: Neighborhood Environments and Peer Relationships," Working papers 2009-31, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
    5. Ryan Yeung & Phuong Nguyen-Hoang, 2016. "Endogenous peer effects: Fact or fiction?," The Journal of Educational Research, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 109(1), pages 37-49, January.
    6. Lionel Perini, 2012. "Peer effects and school design: An analysis of efficiency and equity," IRENE Working Papers 12-01, IRENE Institute of Economic Research.
    7. McVicar, Duncan & Moschion, Julie & Ryan, Chris, 2018. "Achievement effects from new peers: Who matters to whom?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 154-166.
    8. Duncan McVicar & Julie Moschion & Chris Ryan, 2013. "Right Peer, Right Now? Endogenous Peer Effects and Achievement in Victorian Primary Schools," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2013n22, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    9. Simon Burgess & Marcela Umaña-Aponte, 2011. "Raising your sights: the impact of friendship networks on educational aspirations," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 11/271, The Centre for Market and Public Organisation, University of Bristol, UK.
    10. repec:cep:cverdp:017 is not listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    peer groups; education;

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs

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