IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Cross-sectional learning assessments: comparability of regression coefficients and validity of difference-in-difference estimation to evaluate institutional effects




The way achievement inequalities among socio-demographic groups develop throughout childhood in different institutional contexts is a matter of great interest from a policy perspective. Yet, international l earning assessments, like many national studies, are cross-sectional and non-vertically-equated (i.e. achievement i s not measured on a unique scale in different surveys at different age or grades). Against this background, the aim of this paper is twofold. First, I show that the comparison of regression coefficients with non -vertically-equated achievement scores as dependent variables does not convey much information on the development of disparities related to specific individual characteristic, even when applied to standardized scores. On these grounds, I question the validity of difference in difference estimation whose fundamental element is the comparison of regression coefficients between two non equated learning assessments administered at different grades for the evaluation of the impact of institutional features on achievement inequalities related to ascribed individual characteristics like gender or socioeconomic background.

Suggested Citation

  • Contini, Dalit, 2014. "Cross-sectional learning assessments: comparability of regression coefficients and validity of difference-in-difference estimation to evaluate institutional effects," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201431, University of Turin.
  • Handle: RePEc:uto:dipeco:201431

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Thomas Fuchs & Ludger Wößmann, 2007. "What accounts for international differences in student performance? A re-examination using PISA data," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 433-464, May.
    2. De Simone, Gianfranco, 2013. "Render unto primary the things which are primary's: Inherited and fresh learning divides in Italian lower secondary education," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 12-23.
    3. Erik Hanushek & Stephen Machin & Ludger Woessmann (ed.), 2011. "Handbook of the Economics of Education," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 3, number 3, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    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:uto:dipeco:201431. 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: (Piero Cavaleri) or (Marina Grazioli). General contact details of provider: .

    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 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.

    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.