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The Impact of Banning Mobile Phones in Swedish Secondary Schools

Author

Listed:
  • Kessel, Dany

    (Södertörn University)

  • Lif Hardardottir, Hulda

    (Stockholm University)

  • Tyrefors, Björn

    (Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN))

Abstract

Recently, policy makers worldwide have suggested and passed legislation to ban mobile phone use in schools. The influential (and only quantitative) evaluation by Beland and Murphy (2016), suggests that this is a very low-cost but effective policy to improve student performance. In particular, it suggests that the lowest-achieving students have the most to gain. Using a similar empirical setup but with data from Sweden, we partly replicate their study and thereby add external validity to this policy question. Furthermore, we increase the survey response rate of schools to approximately 75 %, although at the expense of the amount of information collected in the survey. In Sweden, we find no impact of mobile phone bans on student performance and can reject even small-sized gains.

Suggested Citation

  • Kessel, Dany & Lif Hardardottir, Hulda & Tyrefors, Björn, 2019. "The Impact of Banning Mobile Phones in Swedish Secondary Schools," Working Paper Series 1288, Research Institute of Industrial Economics, revised 11 Feb 2020.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:iuiwop:1288
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Beland, Louis-Philippe & Murphy, Richard, 2016. "Ill Communication: Technology, distraction & student performance," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 61-76.
    2. Fairlie, Robert W. & Kalil, Ariel, 2017. "The effects of computers on children's social development and school participation: Evidence from a randomized control experiment," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 10-19.
    3. Lisa Barrow & Lisa Markman & Cecilia Elena Rouse, 2009. "Technology's Edge: The Educational Benefits of Computer-Aided Instruction," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 52-74, February.
    4. Ding, Waverly W. & Levin, Sharon G. & Stephan, Paula E. & Winkler, Ann E., 2009. "The Impact of Information Technology on Scientists’ Productivity, Quality and Collaboration Patterns," Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, Working Paper Series qt80n3512q, Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley.
    5. Torbjörn Ott, 2014. "A Historical Materialist Analysis of the Debate in Swedish Print Media on Mobile Phones in School Settings," International Journal of Mobile and Blended Learning (IJMBL), IGI Global, vol. 6(2), pages 1-14, April.
    6. Robert W. Fairlie & Jonathan Robinson, 2013. "Experimental Evidence on the Effects of Home Computers on Academic Achievement among Schoolchildren," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(3), pages 211-240, July.
    7. Hinnerich, Björn Tyrefors & Vlachos, Jonas, 2017. "The impact of upper-secondary voucher school attendance on student achievement. Swedish evidence using external and internal evaluations," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 1-14.
    8. Hall, Caroline & Lundin, Martin & Sibbmark, Kristina, 2019. "A laptop for every child? The impact of ICT on educational outcomes," Working Paper Series 2019:26, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    9. Ofer Malamud & Cristian Pop-Eleches, 2011. "Home Computer Use and the Development of Human Capital," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 126(2), pages 987-1027.
    10. Maya Escueta & Vincent Quan & Andre Joshua Nickow & Philip Oreopoulos, 2017. "Education Technology: An Evidence-Based Review," NBER Working Papers 23744, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. M. Niaz Asadullah & Anindita Bhattacharjee, 2022. "Digital Divide or Digital Provide? Technology, Time Use, and Learning Loss during COVID-19," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 58(10), pages 1934-1957, October.
    2. Abrahamsson, Sara, 2024. "Smartphone Bans, Student Outcomes and Mental Health," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 1/2024, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Mobile phone ban; Student performance;

    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
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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