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Pupil Achievement, School Resources and Family Background

Author

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  • Haegeland, Torbjørn

    (Statistics Norway)

  • Raaum, Oddbjørn

    (Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research)

  • Salvanes, Kjell G.

    (Norwegian School of Economics)

Abstract

Whether increasing resource use in schools has a positive effect on pupil performance has occupied governments, parents and researchers for decades. A main challenge when trying to answer this question is to separate the effects of school resources from the effects of pupils’ family background, since resources may be allocated in a compensatory manner, and pupils may sort into schools. We address these issues using a comprehensive dataset for two cohorts of pupils graduating from lower secondary school in Norway. The dataset is rich in performance measures, resource use variables and family background variables. As performance measures we use results at age 16 across 11 subjects, and we exploit the fact that we have both information from results from national exams and from continuous assessment in class. Controlling for family background, we find a positive but modest effect of resource quantity such as teacher hours per pupil, on pupil achievement. Observable teacher qualifications, within the variation present in lower secondary school in Norway, do not appear to have significant effects on school results. Resource quality as measured by teacher characteristics does not appear to have a significant impact on pupils’ marks. We find clear evidence of compensating resource allocation and teacher sorting as well as relative setting of marks.

Suggested Citation

  • Haegeland, Torbjørn & Raaum, Oddbjørn & Salvanes, Kjell G., 2005. "Pupil Achievement, School Resources and Family Background," IZA Discussion Papers 1459, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1459
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

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    2. Edwin Leuven & Hessel Oosterbeek & Marte Rønning, 2008. "Quasi‐experimental Estimates of the Effect of Class Size on Achievement in Norway," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 110(4), pages 663-693, December.
    3. Hægeland, Torbjørn & Raaum, Oddbjørn & Salvanes, Kjell G., 2012. "Pennies from heaven? Using exogenous tax variation to identify effects of school resources on pupil achievement," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(5), pages 601-614.
    4. Bernt Bratsberg & Knut Røed & Oddbjørn Raaum & Robin Naylor & Markus Ja¨ntti & Tor Eriksson & Eva O¨sterbacka, 2007. "Nonlinearities in Intergenerational Earnings Mobility: Consequences for Cross-Country Comparisons," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(519), pages 72-92, March.
    5. Liouaeddine, Mariem & Bijou, Mohammed & Naji, Faïrouz, 2017. "The Main Determinants of Moroccan Students' Outcomes," MPRA Paper 80247, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    exam results; school resources; family background; compensating resource allocation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education

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