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Model Uncertainty and Race and Gender Heterogeneity in the College Entry Decision

  • Tobias, Justin

This paper uses a flexible modeling strategy to examine the roles of measured ability, family characteristics and proxies for secondary schooling quality as determinants of the decision to enter college. While previous work on this topic has been careful to determine which explanatory variables to include when modeling college entry decisions, few studies have been concerned about appropriate distributional assumptions, (i.e. choice of link function). In this paper, I extend my binary choice analysis to the class of Student-t link functions, which enables me to approximately regard the often-used probit and logit models as special cases. Unconditional estimates which average over competing models and integrate out model uncertainty are also obtained. Using NLSY data, I apply these methods and find that the link functions and estimated impacts of ability and family characteristics on the probabilities of enrolling in college are not constant across race and gender groups.

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Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 12019.

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Date of creation: 01 Jan 2002
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Economics of Education Review 2002, vol. 21, pp. 211-219
Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:12019
Contact details of provider: Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
Web page: http://www.econ.iastate.edu
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  1. David Card & Alan Krueger, 1990. "Does School Quality Matter? Returns to Education and the Characteristics of Public Schools in the United States," Working Papers 645, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  2. Ganderton, Philip T. & Santos, Richard, 1995. "Hispanic college attendance and completion: Evidence from the high school and beyond surveys," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 35-46, March.
  3. Hanushek, E-A & Rivkin, S-G & Taylor, L-L, 1995. "Aggregation and the Estimated Effects of School Resources," RCER Working Papers 397, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  4. Betts, Julian R, 1995. "Does School Quality Matter? Evidence from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(2), pages 231-50, May.
  5. Averett, Susan L. & Burton, Mark L., 1996. "College attendance and the college wage premium: Differences by gender," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 37-49, February.
  6. McElroy, Susan Williams, 1996. "Early childbearing, high school completion, and college enrollment: Evidence from 1980 high school sophomores," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 303-324, June.
  7. Grogger, Jeff, 1996. "School Expenditures and Post-schooling Earnings: Evidence from High School and Beyond," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(4), pages 628-37, November.
  8. John Cawley & Karen Conneely & James Heckman & Edward Vytlacil, 1996. "Cognitive Ability, Wages, and Meritocracy," NBER Working Papers 5645, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. James J. Heckman, 1976. "The Common Structure of Statistical Models of Truncation, Sample Selection and Limited Dependent Variables and a Simple Estimator for Such Models," NBER Chapters, in: Annals of Economic and Social Measurement, Volume 5, number 4, pages 475-492 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Rumberger, Russell W. & Thomas, Scott L., 1993. "The economic returns to college major, quality and performance: A multilevel analysis of recent graduates," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 1-19, March.
  11. Betts, Julian R, 1996. "Do School Resources Matter Only for Older Workers?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(4), pages 638-52, November.
  12. Weiler, William C., 1996. "Factors influencing the matriculation choices of high ability students," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 23-36, February.
  13. Sander, William & Krautmann, Anthony C, 1995. "Catholic Schools, Dropout Rates and Educational Attainment," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 33(2), pages 217-33, April.
  14. Grogger, Jeff, 1996. "Does School Quality Explain the Recent Black/White Wage Trend?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(2), pages 231-53, April.
  15. Kenny, Lawrence W, et al, 1979. "Returns to College Education: An Investigation of Self-Selection Bias Based on the Project Talent Data," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 20(3), pages 775-89, October.
  16. Heckman, James & Layne-Farrar, Anne & Todd, Petra, 1996. "Human Capital Pricing Equations with an Application to Estimating the Effect of Schooling Quality on Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(4), pages 562-610, November.
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