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DVD-based Distance-learning Program for University Entrance Exams: Experimental Evidence from Rural Bangladesh

Author

Listed:
  • Hisaki Kono

    (Faculty of Economics, Kyoto University)

  • Yasuyuki Sawada

    (Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo)

  • Abu S. Shonchoy

    (New York University and Institute of Developing Economies)

Abstract

In contrast to the remarkable improvement in basic education globally, access to higher education remains limited in many developing countries, particularly in rural areas where the quantity and quality of supply is inadequate. In this study, we evaluate a unique DVD-based distance-learning program, targeting students who aim to take university entrance exams in rural Bangladesh, by conducting two experiments: one to evaluate the impact of the program and the second to examine its price sensitivity. Our findings demonstrated that the DVD program had a considerable positive effect on the probability of students passing entrance exams. This effect does not depend on students’ cognitive scores, but does depend on non-cognitive attributes―particularly self-control abilities―indicating the importance of a commitment mechanism in applying the DVD program. In the second experiment, we offered a randomized subsidy to interested participants; however, price sensitivity was not correlated with students' socio-economic status, suggesting that imposing a cost for such a program may not disproportionately exclude poor students. We also found evidence that a higher price induced a greater attendance rate due to the sunk cost effect.

Suggested Citation

  • Hisaki Kono & Yasuyuki Sawada & Abu S. Shonchoy, 2016. "DVD-based Distance-learning Program for University Entrance Exams: Experimental Evidence from Rural Bangladesh," CIRJE F-Series CIRJE-F-1027, CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo.
  • Handle: RePEc:tky:fseres:2016cf1027
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