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Bias Corrected Estimates of GED Returns

  • James J. Heckman
  • Paul LaFontaine

Using three sources of data, this paper examines the direct economic return to GED certification for both native and immigrant high school dropouts. One data source %u2013 the CPS %u2013 is plagued by non-response and allocation bias from the hot-deck procedure that biases upward the estimated return to the GED. Correcting for allocation bias and ability bias, there is no direct economic return to GED certification. An apparent return to GED certification with age found in the raw CPS data is due to dropouts becoming more skilled over time. These results apply to native born as well as immigrant populations.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w12018.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12018.

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Date of creation: Feb 2006
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Publication status: published as Heckman, James J. and Paul A. LaFontaine. "Bias-Corrected Estimates Of GED Returns," Journal of Labor Economics, 2006, v24(3,Jul), 661-800.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12018
Note: CH ED LS PE
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  1. Marco Manacorda, 2004. "Can the Scala Mobile Explain the Fall and Rise of Earnings Inequality in Italy? A Semiparametric Analysis, 19771993," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(3), pages 585-614, July.
  2. Heckman, James J, 1979. "Sample Selection Bias as a Specification Error," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 153-61, January.
  3. Joshua Angrist & Alan Krueger, 1998. "Empirical Strategies in Labor Economics," Working Papers 780, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  4. James J. Heckman & Jora Stixrud & Sergio Urzua, 2006. "The Effects of Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities on Labor Market Outcomes and Social Behavior," NBER Working Papers 12006, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Cameron, Stephen V & Heckman, James J, 1993. "The Nonequivalence of High School Equivalents," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(1), pages 1-47, January.
  6. John M. Barron & Mark C. Berger & Dan A. Black, 2006. "Selective Counteroffers," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 385-410, July.
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