NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Class Size and Class Heterogeneity

Giacomo De Giorgi, Michele Pellizzari, William Gui Woolston

NBER Working Paper No. 16405
Issued in September 2010
NBER Program(s):   ED

We study how class size and class composition affect the academic and labor market performance of college students, two crucial policy questions given the secular increase in college enrollment. Our identification strategy relies on the random assignment of students to teaching classes. We find that a one standard deviation increase in class-size results in a 0.1 standard deviation deterioration of the average grade. Further, the effect is heterogeneous as it is stronger for males and lower income students. Also, the effects of class composition in terms of gender and ability appear to be inverse U-shaped. Finally, a reduction of 20 students (one standard deviation) in one's class size has a positive effect on monthly wages of about 80 Euros (115 USD)

or 6% over the average.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w16405

Published: Giacomo De Giorgi & Michele Pellizzari & William Gui Woolston, 2012. "Class Size And Class Heterogeneity," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 10(4), pages 795-830, 08. citation courtesy of

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