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The study pace among college students before and after a student aid reform: some Swedish results

  • Avdic, Daniel


    (IFAU - Insitute for Labour Market Policy Evaluation)

  • Gartell, Marie


    (Institute for Futures Studies)

In 2001, the Swedish system of student aid for college students was substantially reformed; the grant-share of the total aid was increased, students were allowed to earn more without a reduction in student aid, and the repayment schedule of the loans was significantly tightened. In this paper, we examine the effects of the reform on individual study efficiency, measured as the number of credit points achieved each semester. We use all program students with a first registration at a Swedish college between 1995 and 2001(before the reform) and estimate a linear regression model including individual fixed effects. There is a slightly positive and significant effect of the reform on the aggregate level. However, dividing the sample conditionally on the parental educational level reveals that the individual study efficiency has increased only for students from a strong academic background. In other words, the relative study efficiency has decreased for students from a weak academic background. The different results between students from different parental backgrounds appear to be related to the reallocation of time between work and studies.

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Paper provided by IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy in its series Working Paper Series with number 2011:12.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: 02 Sep 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published as Avdic, Daniel and Marie Gartell, 'Working while studying? Student aid design and socioeconomic achievement disparities in higher education ' in Labour Economics, 2015, pages 26-40.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:ifauwp:2011_012
Contact details of provider: Postal: IFAU, P O Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone: (+46) 18 - 471 70 70
Fax: (+46) 18 - 471 70 71
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  1. Susan M. Dynarski, 1999. "Does Aid Matter? Measuring the Effect of Student Aid on College Attendance and Completion," NBER Working Papers 7422, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Fredriksson, Peter, 1997. " Economic Incentives and the Demand for Higher Education," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 99(1), pages 129-42, March.
  3. Kane, Thomas J, 1994. "College Entry by Blacks since 1970: The Role of College Costs, Family Background, and the Returns to Education," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(5), pages 878-911, October.
  4. Hoenack, Stephen A, 1971. "The Efficient Allocation of Subsidies to College Students," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(3), pages 302-11, June.
  5. David M. Linsenmeier & Harvey S. Rosen & Cecilia Elena Rouse, 2002. "Financial Aid Packages and College Enrollment Decisions: An Econometric Case Study," NBER Working Papers 9228, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Ronald G. Ehrenberg & Daniel R. Sherman, 1987. "Employment While in College, Academic Achievement, and Postcollege Outcomes: A Summary of Results," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 22(1), pages 1-23.
  7. Holmlund, Bertil & Liu, Qian & Nordström Skans, Oskar, 2006. "Mind the Gap? Estimating the Effects of Postponing Higher Education," Working Paper Series 2006:17, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  8. Helena Skyt Nielsen & Torben Sørensen & Christopher Taber, 2008. "Estimating the Effect of Student Aid on College Enrollment: Evidence from a Government Grant Policy Reform," Economics Working Papers 2008-14, School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus.
  9. Brodaty, Thomas & Gary-Bobo, Robert J. & Prieto, Ana, 2008. "Does Speed Signal Ability? The Impact of Grade Repetitions on Employment and Wages," CEPR Discussion Papers 6832, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Susan Dynarski, 2002. "The Behavioral and Distributional Implications of Aid for College," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 279-285, May.
  11. Giorgio Brunello & Claudio Lucifora & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 2004. "The Wage Expectations of European Business and Economics Students," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(4).
  12. Häkkinen, Iida & Uusitalo, Roope, 2003. "The Effect of a Student Aid Reform on Graduation: A Duration Analysis," Working Paper Series 2003:8, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
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