NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Going to a Better School: Effects and Behavioral Responses

Cristian Pop-Eleches, Miguel Urquiola

NBER Working Paper No. 16886
Issued in March 2011
NBER Program(s):   CH   ED

This paper: i) estimates the effect that going to a better school has on students' academic achievement, and ii) explores whether this intervention induces behavioral responses on the part of children, their parents, and the school system. For the first task, we exploit almost 2,000 regression discontinuity quasi-experiments observed in the context of Romania's high school educational system. For the second, we use data from a specialized survey of children, parents, teachers and principals that we implemented in 59 Romanian towns. The first finding is that students do benefit from access to higher achieving schools and tracks within schools. A second set of results suggests that the stratification of schools by quality in general, and the opportunity to attend a better school in particular, result in significant behavioral responses on the part of teachers, parents, and students. Although we do not expect the magnitude or even the direction of these responses to hold everywhere, their existence has a number of implications for evaluation, particularly since some of them change over time, and some would seem to be relevant only once interventions reach a certain scale.

download in pdf format
   (502 K)

email paper

This paper is available as PDF (502 K) or via email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w16886

Published: “Going to a Better School: Effects and Behavioral Respons es,” joint with Miguel Urquiola , American Economic Review , 103(4), 1289 - 1324, 201 3

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded these:
Abdulkadiroğlu, Angrist, and Pathak w17264 The Elite Illusion: Achievement Effects at Boston and New York Exam Schools
Lavy w16885 What Makes an Effective Teacher? Quasi-Experimental Evidence
Malamud and Pop-Eleches w16914 School Tracking and Access to Higher Education Among Disadvantaged Groups
Dupas and Robinson w17255 Why Don't the Poor Save More? Evidence from Health Savings Experiments
MacLeod and Urquiola w15112 Anti-Lemons: School Reputation and Educational Quality
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Data
People
About

Support
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us