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American Economic Journal: Economic Policy: Vol. 3 No. 1 (February 2011)

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The Effect of Classmate Characteristics on Post-secondary Outcomes: Evidence from the Add Health

Article Citation

Bifulco, Robert, Jason M. Fletcher, and Stephen L. Ross. 2011. "The Effect of Classmate Characteristics on Post-secondary Outcomes: Evidence from the Add Health." American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 3(1): 25-53.

DOI: 10.1257/pol.3.1.25

Abstract

This paper uses a within-school/across-cohort design to present new evidence of the effects of high school classmate characteristics on a wide range of post-secondary outcomes. We find that increases in the percent of classmates with college-educated mothers decreases the likelihood of dropping out and increases the likelihood of attending college, despite showing no impact on a range of in-school achievement, attitudes, and behaviors. The percent of students from disadvantaged minority groups does not show any effects on post-secondary outcomes, but is associated with students reporting less caring student-teacher relationships and increased prevalence of some undesirable student behaviors during high school. (JEL I21, J13, J15)

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Authors

Bifulco, Robert (Syracuse U)
Fletcher, Jason M. (Yale U)
Ross, Stephen L. (U CT)

JEL Classifications

I21: Analysis of Education
J13: Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
J15: Economics of Minorities and Races; Non-labor Discrimination

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