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Identifying class size effects in developing countries : evidence from rural schools in Bolivia

Author

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  • Urquiola, Miguel

Abstract

Although class size has attracted great interest as a policy instrument, inferences on its effects are controversial. Recent work highlights a particular way to consider the endogeneity issues that affect this variable: class size is often correlated with enrollment, which may in turn be related to socioeconomic status. In Bolivia, the author shows, these correlations are significant. Building from institutional arrangements that determine pupil-teacher ratios in rural areas, the author implements two research designs to deal with this issue. The first uses a teacher allocation pattern as an instrumental variable; the second relies on variation from remote schools with a single class per grade. Both suggest that class size has a negative effect on test scores.

Suggested Citation

  • Urquiola, Miguel, 2001. "Identifying class size effects in developing countries : evidence from rural schools in Bolivia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2711, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:2711
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Alan B. Krueger, 1999. "Experimental Estimates of Education Production Functions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 497-532.
    2. Michael Boozer & Cecilia Rouse, 1995. "Intraschool Variation in Class Size: Patterns and Implications," NBER Working Papers 5144, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    5. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1992. "Does School Quality Matter? Returns to Education and the Characteristics of Public Schools in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 1-40, February.
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    7. Hanushek, Eric A, 1986. "The Economics of Schooling: Production and Efficiency in Public Schools," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 24(3), pages 1141-1177, September.
    8. Alejandra Mizala & Pilar Romaguera & Teresa Reinaga, 1999. "Factores que inciden en el rendimiento escolar en Bolivia," Documentos de Trabajo 61, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
    9. Anne Case & Angus Deaton, 1998. "School quality and educational outcomes in South Africa," Working Papers 993, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing..
    10. repec:fth:prinin:344 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. repec:pri:crcwel:wp98-08-case is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Boozer, M. & Rouse, C., 1995. "Intraschool Variation in Class Size: Patterns and Implications," Papers 728, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
    13. Akerhielm, Karen, 1995. "Does class size matter?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 229-241, September.
    14. Behrman, Jere R & Birdsall, Nancy, 1983. "The Quality of Schooling: Quantity Alone is Misleading," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(5), pages 928-946, December.
    15. Joshua D. Angrist & Victor Lavy, 1999. "Using Maimonides' Rule to Estimate the Effect of Class Size on Scholastic Achievement," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 533-575.
    16. Kremer, Michael R, 1995. "Research on Schooling: What We Know and What We Don't: A Comment," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 10(2), pages 247-254, August.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Ludger Wossmann, 2010. "Families, schools and primary-school learning: evidence for Argentina and Colombia in an international perspective," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(21), pages 2645-2665.
    2. Wo[ss]mann, Ludger & West, Martin, 2006. "Class-size effects in school systems around the world: Evidence from between-grade variation in TIMSS," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 695-736, April.
    3. Cohen-Zada, Danny & Gradstein, Mark & Reuven, Ehud, 2009. "Class Size and the Regression Discontinuity Design: The Case of Public Schools," IZA Discussion Papers 4679, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. West, Martin R. & Woessmann, Ludger, 2006. "Which school systems sort weaker students into smaller classes? International evidence," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 944-968, December.
    5. Das, J. & Dercon, S. & Habyarimana, J. & Krishnan, P., 2004. "‘When Can School Inputs Improve Test Scores?’," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0437, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    6. World Bank, 2002. "Bolivia : Poverty Diagnostic 2000," World Bank Other Operational Studies 15382, The World Bank.
    7. Jakubowski, Maciej & Sakowski, Pawel, 2006. "Quasi-Experimental Estimates of Class Size Effect in Primary Schools in Poland," MPRA Paper 4958, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Eskeland, Gunnar S. & Filmer, Deon, 2002. "Autonomy, participation, and learning in Argentine schools - findings andtheir implications for decentralization," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2766, The World Bank.
    9. Alejandra Mizala & Pilar Romaguera, 2002. "Equity and Educational Performance," ECONOMIA JOURNAL, THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION - LACEA, vol. 0(Spring 20), pages 219-274, January.
    10. Kenneth Y. Chay & Patrick J. McEwan & Miguel Urquiola, 2005. "The Central Role of Noise in Evaluating Interventions That Use Test Scores to Rank Schools," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1237-1258, September.
    11. Patrick J. McEwan, 2012. "Cost-effectiveness analysis of education and health interventions in developing countries," Journal of Development Effectiveness, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(2), pages 189-213, June.
    12. M. Niaz Asadullah, 2005. "The effect of class size on student achievement: evidence from Bangladesh," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(4), pages 217-221.
    13. repec:pit:wpaper:396 is not listed on IDEAS

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