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A Quality-Preserving Increase in Four-Year College Attendance: Evidence from NLS-72 and ELS:2002

  • Robert B. Archibald

    ()

    (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)

  • David H. Feldman

    ()

    (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)

  • Peter McHenry

    ()

    (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)

We use the NLS-72 and ELS:2002 data sets to evaluate changes in the college matching process. Rising attendance rates at four-year institutions have not decreased average preparedness of college goers or of college graduates, and further attendance gains are possible before diminishing returns sets in. We use multinomial logit models to demonstrate that measures of likely success (GPA) became more predictive of college attendance over time, while other student characteristics such as race and parents’ education became less predictive. Our evidence suggests that schools have become better at sorting while students have efficiently responded to changes in the return to higher education.

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File URL: http://economics.wm.edu/wp/cwm_wp147_rev.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, College of William and Mary in its series Working Papers with number 147.

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Length: 45 pages
Date of creation: 02 Jun 2015
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cwm:wpaper:147
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  1. John Bound & Michael Lovenheim & Sarah Turner, 2009. "Why Have College Completion Rates Declined? An Analysis of Changing Student Preparation and Collegiate Resources," NBER Working Papers 15566, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz & Ilyana Kuziemko, 2006. "The Homecoming of American College Women: The Reversal of the College Gender Gap," NBER Working Papers 12139, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Philippe Belley & Lance Lochner, 2007. "The Changing Role of Family Income and Ability in Determining Educational Achievement," Working Papers 2011-037, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
  4. Eleanor Wiske Dillon & Jeffrey Andrew Smith, 2013. "The Determinants of Mismatch Between Students and Colleges," NBER Working Papers 19286, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Carneiro, Pedro & Lee, Sokbae, 2010. "Trends in Quality-Adjusted Skill Premia in the United States, 1960-2000," IZA Discussion Papers 5295, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Michael F. Lovenheim & C. Lockwood Reynolds, 2011. "Changes in Postsecondary Choices by Ability and Income: Evidence from the National Longitudinal Surveys of Youth," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 5(1), pages 70 - 109.
  7. Caroline M. Hoxby & Christopher Avery, 2012. "The Missing "One-Offs": The Hidden Supply of High-Achieving, Low Income Students," NBER Working Papers 18586, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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