IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/umc/wpaper/1014.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Labor-Market Returns to the GED Using Regression Discontinuity Analysis

Author

Abstract

In this paper, we evaluate the labor-market returns to General Educational Development (GED) certification using Missouri administrative data. We develop a fuzzy regression discontinuity (FRD) method to account for the fact that GED test takers can repeatedly retake the test until they pass it. Our technique can be applied to other situations where program participation is determined by a score on a “retake-able” test. Previous regression discontinuity estimates of the returns to GED certification have not accounted for retaking behavior, so these estimates may be biased. We find that the effect of GED certification on either employment or earnings is not statistically significant. GED certification increases postsecondary participation by up to four percentage points for men and up to eight percentage points for women.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter R. Mueser & Christopher Jepsen & Kenneth Troske, 2010. "Labor-Market Returns to the GED Using Regression Discontinuity Analysis," Working Papers 1014, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
  • Handle: RePEc:umc:wpaper:1014
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://drive.google.com/file/d/13AHhDsuiSp2VO1x3jcEJA1L-QGheF1-s/view?usp=sharing
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Erik Hanushek & Stephen Machin & Ludger Woessmann (ed.), 2011. "Handbook of the Economics of Education," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 4, number 4, June.
    2. Stephanie Riegg Cellini & Fernando Ferreira & Jesse Rothstein, 2010. "The Value of School Facility Investments: Evidence from a Dynamic Regression Discontinuity Design," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(1), pages 215-261.
    3. Imbens, Guido W. & Lemieux, Thomas, 2008. "Regression discontinuity designs: A guide to practice," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 615-635, February.
    4. Richard J. Murnane & John B. Willett & John H. Tyler, 2000. "Who Benefits from Obtaining a GED? Evidence from High School and Beyond," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(1), pages 23-37, February.
    5. John H. Tyler & Richard J. Murnane & John B. Willett, 2000. "Do the Cognitive Skills of School Dropouts Matter in the Labor Market?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 35(4), pages 748-754.
    6. Papay, John P. & Willett, John B. & Murnane, Richard J., 2011. "Extending the regression-discontinuity approach to multiple assignment variables," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 161(2), pages 203-207, April.
    7. Lee, David S. & Card, David, 2008. "Regression discontinuity inference with specification error," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 655-674, February.
    8. Hahn, Jinyong & Todd, Petra & Van der Klaauw, Wilbert, 2001. "Identification and Estimation of Treatment Effects with a Regression-Discontinuity Design," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(1), pages 201-209, January.
    9. David S. Lee & Thomas Lemieux, 2010. "Regression Discontinuity Designs in Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 48(2), pages 281-355, June.
    10. Paco Martorell & Isaac McFarlin, 2011. "Help or Hindrance? The Effects of College Remediation on Academic and Labor Market Outcomes," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(2), pages 436-454, May.
    11. Magnus Lofstrom & John Tyler, 2008. "Modeling the signaling value of the GED with an application to an exogenous passing standard increase in Texas," Research in Labor Economics, in: Work, Earnings and Other Aspects of the Employment Relation, pages 305-352, Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
    12. David C. Wyld, 2010. "ASecond Life for organizations?: managing in the new, virtual world," Management Research Review, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 33(6), pages 529-562, May.
    13. James J. Heckman & John Eric Humphries & Paul A. LaFontaine & Pedro L. Rodríguez, 2012. "Taking the Easy Way Out: How the GED Testing Program Induces Students to Drop Out," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(3), pages 495-520.
    14. McCrary, Justin, 2008. "Manipulation of the running variable in the regression discontinuity design: A density test," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 698-714, February.
    15. Christopher Jepsen & Peter Mueser & Kenneth Troske, 2015. "Second Chance for High-School Dropouts? A Regression Discontinuity Analysis of Postsecondary Educational Returns to General Educational Development Certification," Working Papers 201508, Geary Institute, University College Dublin.
    16. 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.
    17. James J. Heckman & Paul A. LaFontaine, 2006. "Bias-Corrected Estimates of GED Returns," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 661-700, July.
    18. Tyler, John H. & Murnane, Richard J. & Willett, John B., 2003. "Who benefits from a GED? Evidence for females from High School and Beyond," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 237-247, June.
    19. John H. Tyler & Richard J. Murnane & John B. Willett, 2000. "Estimating the Labor Market Signaling Value of the GED," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(2), pages 431-468.
    20. repec:ucn:wpaper:10197/6648 is not listed on IDEAS
    21. Jian Cao & Ernst W. Stromsdorfer & Gregory Weeks, 1996. "The Human Capital Effect of General Education Development Certificates on Low Income Women," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 31(1), pages 206-228.
    22. Heckman, James J. & Humphries, John Eric & Kautz, Tim (ed.), 2014. "The Myth of Achievement Tests," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, number 9780226100098.
    23. Richard J. Murnane & John B. Willett & Kathryn Parker Boudett, 1999. "Do Male Dropouts Benefit from Obtaining a GED, Postsecondary Education, and Training?," Evaluation Review, , vol. 23(5), pages 475-503, October.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Heckman, James J. & Humphries, John Eric & Mader, Nicholas S., 2011. "The GED," Handbook of the Economics of Education, in: Erik Hanushek & Stephen Machin & Ludger Woessmann (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Education, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 9, pages 423-483, Elsevier.
      • James J. Heckman & John Eric Humphries & Nicholas S. Mader, 2010. "The GED," NBER Working Papers 16064, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
      • Heckman, James J. & Humphries, John Eric & Mader, Nicholas S., 2010. "The GED," IZA Discussion Papers 4975, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    2. Christopher Jepsen & Peter Mueser & Kenneth Troske, 2017. "Second Chance for High School Dropouts? A Regression Discontinuity Analysis of Postsecondary Educational Returns to the GED," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(S1), pages 273-304.
    3. Patrick Bennett & Richard Blundell & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2020. "A second chance? Labor market returns to adult education using school reforms," IFS Working Papers W20/28, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    4. Yu-Chin Hsu & Chung-Ming Kuan & Giorgio Teng-Yu Lo, 2017. "Quantile Treatment Effects in Regression Discontinuity Designs with Covariates," IEAS Working Paper : academic research 17-A009, Institute of Economics, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan.
    5. Paco Martorell & Damon Clark, 2010. "The Signaling Value of a High School Diploma," Working Papers 1248, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    6. Khoo, Pauline & Ost, Ben, 2018. "The effect of graduating with honors on earnings," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 149-162.
    7. Soohyung Lee & Muriel Niederle, 2015. "Propose with a rose? Signaling in internet dating markets," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 18(4), pages 731-755, December.
    8. Richard J. Murnane, 2013. "U.S. High School Graduation Rates: Patterns and Explanations," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(2), pages 370-422, June.
    9. Cory Koedel & Jiaxi Li & Matthew G. Springer & Li Tan, 2016. "The Impact of Performance Ratings on Job Satisfaction for Public School Teachers," Working Papers 1617, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
    10. Jingjing Zhou & Yaoyu Zhang & Yong Sha & Jianfang Zhou & Hang Ren & Xin Shen & Hui Xu, 2022. "The Effect of the “Triple-Layer Medical Security” Policy on the Vulnerability as Expected Poverty of Rural Households: Evidence from Yunnan Province, China," IJERPH, MDPI, vol. 19(19), pages 1-22, October.
    11. Cory Koedel & Jiaxi Li & Matthew G. Springer & Li Tan, 2018. "Teacher Performance Ratings and Professional Improvement," Working Papers 1808, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
    12. Aaron Albert & Nathan Wozny, 2022. "The Impact of Academic Probation: Do Intensive Interventions Help?," Working Papers 2022-02, Department of Economics and Geosciences, US Air Force Academy.
    13. Paco Martorell & Damon Clark, 2010. "The Signaling Value of a High School Diploma," Working Papers 1248, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    14. JooHee Han, 2018. "Who Goes to College, Military, Prison, or Long-Term Unemployment? Racialized School-to-Labor Market Transitions Among American Men," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 37(4), pages 615-640, August.
    15. Christopher Jepsen & Peter Mueser & Kenneth Troske, 2015. "Second Chance for High-School Dropouts? A Regression Discontinuity Analysis of Postsecondary Educational Returns to General Educational Development Certification," Working Papers 201508, Geary Institute, University College Dublin.
    16. Darolia, Rajeev & Mueser, Peter & Cronin, Jacob, 2021. "Labor market returns to a prison GED," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 82(C).
    17. Chen Cohen & Ori Zax, 2022. "Human capital acquisition as a signaling device in promotion competition," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 73(2), pages 550-566, May.
    18. Polson, Chester, 2018. "TAKS-ing students? Texas exit exam effects on human capital formation," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 129-150.
    19. repec:hrv:hksfac:34298861 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Georg Graetz, 2021. "On the interpretation of diploma wage effects estimated by regression discontinuity designs," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 54(1), pages 228-258, February.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Christopher Jepsen & Peter Mueser & Kenneth Troske, 2015. "Second Chance for High-School Dropouts? A Regression Discontinuity Analysis of Postsecondary Educational Returns to General Educational Development Certification," Working Papers 201508, Geary Institute, University College Dublin.
    2. Christopher Jepsen & Peter Mueser & Kenneth Troske, 2017. "Second Chance for High School Dropouts? A Regression Discontinuity Analysis of Postsecondary Educational Returns to the GED," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(S1), pages 273-304.
    3. repec:ucn:wpaper:10197/6648 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Matias D. Cattaneo & Rocío Titiunik, 2022. "Regression Discontinuity Designs," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 14(1), pages 821-851, August.
    5. Heckman, James J. & Humphries, John Eric & Mader, Nicholas S., 2011. "The GED," Handbook of the Economics of Education, in: Erik Hanushek & Stephen Machin & Ludger Woessmann (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Education, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 9, pages 423-483, Elsevier.
      • Heckman, James J. & Humphries, John Eric & Mader, Nicholas S., 2010. "The GED," IZA Discussion Papers 4975, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
      • James J. Heckman & John Eric Humphries & Nicholas S. Mader, 2010. "The GED," NBER Working Papers 16064, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Feng, Andy & Graetz, Georg, 2017. "A question of degree: The effects of degree class on labor market outcomes," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 140-161.
    7. Mauricio Villamizar‐Villegas & Freddy A. Pinzon‐Puerto & Maria Alejandra Ruiz‐Sanchez, 2022. "A comprehensive history of regression discontinuity designs: An empirical survey of the last 60 years," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(4), pages 1130-1178, September.
    8. Jin-young Choi & Myoung-jae Lee, 2017. "Regression discontinuity: review with extensions," Statistical Papers, Springer, vol. 58(4), pages 1217-1246, December.
    9. Guido Imbens & Stefan Wager, 2019. "Optimized Regression Discontinuity Designs," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 101(2), pages 264-278, May.
    10. Paco Martorell & Damon Clark, 2010. "The Signaling Value of a High School Diploma," Working Papers 1248, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    11. Richard J. Murnane, 2013. "U.S. High School Graduation Rates: Patterns and Explanations," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(2), pages 370-422, June.
    12. de Lazzer, Jakob, 2016. "Non-monotonic Selection Issues in Electoral Regression Discontinuity Designs," VfS Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145845, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    13. Paco Martorell & Damon Clark, 2010. "The Signaling Value of a High School Diploma," Working Papers 1248, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    14. de la Mata, D, 2011. "The Effect of Medicaid on Children's Health: A Regression Discontinuity Approach," Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers 11/16, HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York.
    15. Luis Felipe Batista de Oliveira & Rafael Terra, 2016. "Impact of school day extension on educational outcomes: evidence from Mais Educação in Brazil," Working Papers 147, International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth.
    16. Chad D. Meyerhoefer & Muzhe Yang, 2011. "The Relationship between Food Assistance and Health: A Review of the Literature and Empirical Strategies for Identifying Program Effects," Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 33(3), pages 304-344.
    17. Dolores De La Mata, 2012. "The Effect Of Medicaid Eligibility On Coverage, Utilization, And Children'S Health," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(9), pages 1061-1079, September.
    18. Andrew McEachin & Thurston Domina & Andrew Penner, 2020. "Heterogeneous Effects of Early Algebra across California Middle Schools," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 39(3), pages 772-800, June.
    19. Montoya, Ana Maria & Noton, Carlos & Solis, Alex, 2018. "The Returns to College Choice: Loans, Scholarships and Labor Outcomes," Working Paper Series 2018:12, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
    20. Egger, Peter H. & Wamser, Georg, 2015. "The impact of controlled foreign company legislation on real investments abroad. A multi-dimensional regression discontinuity design," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 129(C), pages 77-91.
    21. Federick Ngo, 2019. "Fractions in College: How Basic Math Remediation Impacts Community College Students," Research in Higher Education, Springer;Association for Institutional Research, vol. 60(4), pages 485-520, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Regression discontinuity; Program evaluation; GED;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C26 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Instrumental Variables (IV) Estimation
    • H43 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Project Evaluation; Social Discount Rate
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:umc:wpaper:1014. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/edumous.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Chao Gu (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/edumous.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.