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Resources and student achievement – evidence from a Swedish policy reform




This paper utilizes a policy change to estimate the effect of teacher density on student performance. We find that an increase in teacher density has a positive effect on student achievement. The baseline estimate – obtained by using the grade point average as the outcome variable – implies that resource increases corresponding to the class-size reduction in the STAR-experiment (i.e., a reduction of 7 students) improves performance by 2.6 percentile ranks (or 0.08 standard deviations). When we use test score data for men, potentially a more objective measure of student performance, the effect of resources appears to be twice the size of the baseline estimate.

Suggested Citation

  • Fredriksson, Peter & Öckert, Björn, 2007. "Resources and student achievement – evidence from a Swedish policy reform," Working Paper Series 2007:26, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:ifauwp:2007_026

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Alan B. Krueger, 1999. "Experimental Estimates of Education Production Functions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 497-532.
    2. Esther Duflo, 2001. "Schooling and Labor Market Consequences of School Construction in Indonesia: Evidence from an Unusual Policy Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 795-813, September.
    3. Mikael Lindahl, 2005. "Home versus School Learning: A New Approach to Estimating the Effect of Class Size on Achievement," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 107(2), pages 375-394, June.
    4. Alan B. Krueger, 2003. "Economic Considerations and Class Size," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(485), pages 34-63, February.
    5. Edward P. Lazear, 2001. "Educational Production," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(3), pages 777-803.
    6. Joshua D. Angrist & Victor Lavy, 1999. "Using Maimonides' Rule to Estimate the Effect of Class Size on Scholastic Achievement," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 533-575.
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    Cited by:

    1. Smyth, Emer & McCoy, Selina, 2009. "Investing in Education: Combating Educational Disadvantage," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number RS006.
    2. repec:bla:obuest:v:79:y:2017:i:5:p:654-688 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Figlio, D. & Karbownik, K. & Salvanes, K.G., 2016. "Education Research and Administrative Data," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
    4. Karbownik, Krzysztof, 2014. "Do changes in student quality affect teacher mobility? Evidence from an admission reform," Working Paper Series 2014:15, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.

    More about this item


    Student performance; teacher/student ratio; policy reform; differences-in-differences;

    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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