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The role of information in the application for merit-based scholarships: Evidence from a randomized field experiment

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  • Herber, Stefanie P.

Abstract

If information asymmetries prevent talented students of non-academic backgrounds from applying for merit-based aid, the full potential of qualified youth will not be unfolded and social selectivity is likely to corroborate. This paper analyzes whether information asymmetries exist and decrease students' likelihood to apply for merit-based scholarships. In a randomized field experiment, I expose more than 5,000 German students either to general information on federally funded scholarships or additionally to tailored information on details of the application process, conveyed by a similar role model. Both treatments reduced information asymmetries significantly. The role model treatment did significantly increase non-academic and male students' application probabilities for federally funded merit-based scholarships. Providing only general information on the scholarship system triggered participants' own information search for alternative funding sources and increased application rates for other, not federally funded scholarships.

Suggested Citation

  • Herber, Stefanie P., 2015. "The role of information in the application for merit-based scholarships: Evidence from a randomized field experiment," BERG Working Paper Series 95, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:bamber:95
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    Cited by:

    1. Herold, Florian & Kuzmics, Christoph, 2016. "The evolution of taking roles," BERG Working Paper Series 115, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    2. Meyer, Dietmar & Shera, Adela, 2015. "Remittances' impact on the labor supply and on the deficit of current account," BERG Working Paper Series 97, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    3. Görlitz, Katja & Tamm, Marcus, 2017. "Information, financial aid and training participation: Evidence from a randomized field experiment," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 138-148.
    4. Schmitt, Noemi & Westerhoff, Frank, 2015. "Evolutionary competition and profit taxes: market stability versus tax burden," BERG Working Paper Series 104, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    5. Fatoke Dato, Mafaizath A., 2015. "Impact of income shock on children’s schooling and labor in a West African country," MPRA Paper 64317, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. González-Díaz, Julio & Herold, Florian & Domínguez, Diego, 2016. "Strategic sequential voting," BERG Working Paper Series 113, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    7. Bexheti, Abdylmenaf & Mustafi, Besime, 2015. "Impact of public funding of education on economic growth in Macedonia," BERG Working Paper Series 98, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    8. Sahm, Marco, 2017. "Risk aversion and prudence in contests," BERG Working Paper Series 120, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    9. repec:taf:quantf:v:17:y:2017:i:8:p:1187-1203 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Lena Dräger & Christian R. Proaño, 2015. "Cross-Border Banking and Business Cycles in Asymmetric Currency Unions," Macroeconomics and Finance Series 201501, University of Hamburg, Department of Socioeconomics.
    11. Lojak, Benjamin, 2016. "Sentiment-driven investment, non-linear corporate debt dynamics and co-existing business cycle regimes," BERG Working Paper Series 112, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    12. March, Christoph & Sahm, Marco, 2017. "Contests as selection mechanisms: The impact of risk aversion," BERG Working Paper Series 127, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    13. repec:eee:ecoedu:v:60:y:2017:i:c:p:125-141 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Noemi Schmitt & Frank Westerhoff, 2017. "Herding behaviour and volatility clustering in financial markets," Quantitative Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(8), pages 1187-1203, August.
    15. Schmitt, Noemi & Tuinstra, Jan & Westerhoff, Frank, 2017. "Side effects of nonlinear profit taxes in an evolutionary market entry model: Abrupt changes, coexisting attractors and hysteresis problems," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 135(C), pages 15-38.
    16. March, Christoph & Sahm, Marco, 2017. "Asymmetric discouragement in asymmetric contests," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 151(C), pages 23-27.
    17. Fatoke-Dato, Mafaïzath A., 2015. "Impact of an educational demand-and-supply policy on girls' education in West Africa: Heterogeneity in income, school environment and ethnicity," BERG Working Paper Series 101, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    18. Sahm, Marco, 2017. "Are sequential round-robin tournaments discriminatory?," BERG Working Paper Series 121, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    19. Proaño, Christian R. & Lojak, Benjamin, 2015. "Debt stabilization and macroeconomic volatility in monetary unions under heterogeneous sovereign risk perceptions," BERG Working Paper Series 106, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.
    20. Peter, Frauke H. & Zambre, Vaishali, 2017. "Intended college enrollment and educational inequality: Do students lack information?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 125-141.
    21. Sahm, Marco, 2016. "Advance-purchase financing of projects with few buyers," BERG Working Paper Series 118, Bamberg University, Bamberg Economic Research Group.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    information asymmetries; student financial aid; merit scholarships; role model; field experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid
    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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