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Self-esteem and educational attainment

  • Daniele CHECCHI


  • Gabriella PRAVETTONI


In this paper we consider the role of behavioural traits (self-confidence, decomposed into selfefficacy and self-liking) as potential determinants of academic career. While we find confirmation of previous results in the literature with respect to previous schooling and parental education, we do not find indication of robust effects from these traits. Both measures correlate positively with academic performance, but when potential endogeneity is accounted for through the use of instrumental variable estimation techniques, they lose statistical significance. In addition, if we consider a more general model where both behavioural traits and academic performance are jointly determined, we find that self-liking is endogenous to the joint process, whereas academic performance and self-efficacy reinforce each other.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano in its series Departmental Working Papers with number 2003-30.

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Date of creation: 01 Jan 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mil:wpdepa:2003-30
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  1. Green, Francis & Machin, Stephen & Wilkinson, David, 1998. "The Meaning and Determinants of Skills Shortages," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 60(2), pages 165-87, May.
  2. Murnane, Richard J. & Willett, John B. & Braatz, M. Jay & Duhaldeborde, Yves, 2001. "Do different dimensions of male high school students' skills predict labor market success a decade later? Evidence from the NLSY," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 311-320, August.
  3. Daniele Checchi & Giuseppe Bertola, 2001. "Sorting and private education in Italy," Departmental Working Papers 2001-21, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
  4. Card, David, 1999. "The causal effect of education on earnings," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 30, pages 1801-1863 Elsevier.
  5. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:117:y:2002:i:3:p:871-915 is not listed on IDEAS
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