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Procrastination, Academic Success and the Effectiveness of a Remedial Program

  • De Paola, Maria

    ()

    (University of Calabria)

  • Scoppa, Vincenzo

    ()

    (University of Calabria)

Procrastination produces harmful effects for human capital investments and studying activities. Using data from a large sample of Italian undergraduates, we measure procrastination with the actual behaviour of students, considering the delay in finalizing their university enrolment procedure. We firstly show that procrastination is a strong predictor of students' educational achievements. This result holds true controlling for quite reliable measures of cognitive abilities, a number of background characteristics and indicators of students' motivation. Secondly, we investigate, using a Regression Discontinuity Design, the effects of a remedial program in helping students with different propensity to procrastinate. We show that the policy especially advantages students who tend to procrastinate, suggesting that also policies not directly aimed at handling procrastination can help to solve self-control problems.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 8021.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp8021
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  1. Golsteyn B.H.H. & Lindahl L. & Grönqvist H., 2013. "Time preferences and lifetime outcomes," ROA Research Memorandum 019, Maastricht University, Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market (ROA).
  2. Ted O'Donoghue & Matthew Rabin, 1996. "Doing It Now or Later," Discussion Papers 1172, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  3. Checchi, Daniele & Fiorio, Carlo V. & Leonardi, Marco, 2008. "Intergenerational Persistence in Educational Attainment in Italy," IZA Discussion Papers 3622, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Michael D. Grubb, 2006. "Selling to Overconfident Consumers," Discussion Papers 06-018, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  5. Castillo, Marco & Ferraro, Paul J. & Jordan, Jeffrey L. & Petrie, Ragan, 2011. "The today and tomorrow of kids: Time preferences and educational outcomes of children," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(11), pages 1377-1385.
  6. Maria De Paola & Francesca Gioia, 2013. "Impatience And Academic Performance. Less Effort And Less Ambitious Goals," Working Papers 201302, Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica).
  7. S. Dellavigna., 2011. "Psychology and Economics: Evidence from the Field," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 4.
  8. Scott E. Carrell & Bruce Sacerdote, 2013. "Late Interventions Matter Too: The Case of College Coaching New Hampshire," NBER Working Papers 19031, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Angrist, Joshua & Lang, Daniel W. & Oreopoulos, Philip, 2007. "Incentives and Services for College Achievement: Evidence from a Randomized Trial," IZA Discussion Papers 3134, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Maria De Paola & Vincenzo Scoppa, 2011. "The Effectiveness Of Remedial Courses In Italy: A Fuzzy Regression Discontinuity Design," Working Papers 201114, Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica).
  11. Yona Rubinstein & James J. Heckman, 2001. "The Importance of Noncognitive Skills: Lessons from the GED Testing Program," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 145-149, May.
  12. Wong, Wei-Kang, 2008. "How much time-inconsistency is there and does it matter? Evidence on self-awareness, size, and effects," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 68(3-4), pages 645-656, December.
  13. Stefano DellaVigna & Ulrike Malmendier, 2006. "Paying Not to Go to the Gym," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 694-719, June.
  14. Akerlof, George A, 1991. "Procrastination and Obedience," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 1-19, May.
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