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Which Factors Determine Academic Performance of Undergraduate Students in Economics? Some Spanish Evidence

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  • Dolado, Juan J.
  • Morales, Eduardo

Abstract

This paper analyses the determinants of academic performance of first-year undergraduate students in Economics at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, over the period 2001-2005. We focus on a few core subjects which differ in their degree of mathematical complexity. Type of school, specialization track at high school, and the grades obtained at the university entry-exam are among the key factors we examine. Our main finding is that those students who completed a technical track at high school tend to do much better in subjects involving mathematics than those who followed a social sciences track (tailor-made for future economics students) and that the latter do not perform significantly better than the former in subjects with less degree of formalism. Moreover, students from public schools are predominant in the lower and upper parts of the grade distribution while females tend to perform better than males.

Suggested Citation

  • Dolado, Juan J. & Morales, Eduardo, 2007. "Which Factors Determine Academic Performance of Undergraduate Students in Economics? Some Spanish Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 6237, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6237
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Hanushek, Eric A, 1995. "Interpreting Recent Research on Schooling in Developing Countries," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 10(2), pages 227-246, August.
    2. Anne Case & Angus Deaton, 1999. "School Inputs and Educational Outcomes in South Africa," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 1047-1084.
    3. Lorraine Dearden & Javier Ferri & Costas Meghir, 2002. "The Effect Of School Quality On Educational Attainment And Wages," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(1), pages 1-20, February.
    4. Jesse Levin, 2001. "For whom the reductions count: A quantile regression analysis of class size and peer effects on scholastic achievement," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 26(1), pages 221-246.
    5. Koenker, Roger W & Bassett, Gilbert, Jr, 1978. "Regression Quantiles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 33-50, January.
    6. Koenker, Roger & Bassett, Gilbert, Jr, 1982. "Robust Tests for Heteroscedasticity Based on Regression Quantiles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 43-61, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Juan J. Dolado & Eduardo Morales, 2009. "Which factors determine academic performance of Economics freshers? Some Spanish evidence," Investigaciones Economicas, Fundación SEPI, vol. 33(2), pages 179-210, May.
    2. Johan N. M. Lagerlöf & Andrew J. Seltzer, 2009. "The Effects of Remedial Mathematics on the Learning of Economics: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(2), pages 115-137, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    academic performance; multinomial logit; pre-university determinants; quantile regressions;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I29 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Other

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