I21

Analysis of Education

Gender and Birth Order Effects on Intra-household Schooling Choices and Education Attainments in Kenya

In this paper, we investigate the effect of two important family characteristics-gender and birth order-on intra-household investments in, and educational outcomes of, children in Kenya. We measure intra-household education investments in children by household's decision to enrol children in private schools and educational outcomes by two variables, completed years of education and relative grade attainment.

Private Schools and Student Learning Achievements in Kenya

This papers examines the effect of private schools on literacy and numeracy skill acquisition among children mainly drawn from lower primary grades in Kenya. We apply a number of estimation approaches that accounts for endogeneity of school choice. We begin with the OLS, as a baseline model. We then estimate the household fxed effects (FE) model to control for unobservables at the household level. We supplement the OLS and FE models with the propensity score matching (PSM) technique. We find a significant private school advantage throughout these methodologies.

Average and Heterogeneous Effects of Class Size on Educational Achievement in Lesotho

Understanding class size effects on educational achievement remains a preoccupation of many economists. But empirical results are, to this far, still inconclusive. I use the two-stage least squares and the instrumental variable quantile regression methods on Lesotho’s grade 6 students maths and reading test scores to estimate, respectively, the mean and distributional effects of class size. I find strong evidence for putative class size effects on reading achievement, but not on maths achievement.

The Effects of Teacher Strike Activity on Student Learning in South African Primary Schools

This paper investigates whether teacher strikes affect student achievement at the primary school level in South Africa. A cross-subject analysis with student fixed effects is used to eliminate sources of endogeneity bias at the school and student level. Results indicate that teacher strike participation negatively affects learning for students in the poorest three quarters of schools in South Africa. A negative effect size as large as ten per cent of a standard deviation is observed.

Measuring the impact of educational interventions on the academic performance of academic development students in second-year microeconomics

This paper analyses the impact of educational interventions made in the first-and second-year microeconomics courses on academic development students' final mark in the second-year course. It also addresses issues of methodology, specification, and statistical analysis with respect to other studies in the field. The results suggest that the educational interventions in the first year had a positive impact on the academic performance of the academic development cohort, relative to the mainstream cohort for the first period (2000-2002).

English Language Proficiency and Earnings in a Developing Country: The Case of South Africa

In this paper we explore the relationship between English language proficiency and earnings in South Africa, using new data from the first wave of the National Income Dynamics panel survey of 2008. Much of the literature on this topic has studied the impact on earnings of host country language acquisition among minority groups of immigrants to developed countries.

Climate Change Disaster Management: Mitigation and Adaptation in a Public Goods Framework

This paper explores the collective action problem as it relates to climate change and develops two models that capture the mitigation/adaptation trade-off. The first model presents climate change as a certain disaster, while the second models climate change as a stochastic event. A one-shot public goods experiment with students reveals a relatively low rate of mitigation for both models. The effect of vulnerability towards climate change is also examined by varying the magnitude of the disaster across treatments.

The Economic Origins of Twentieth Century Decolonisation in West Africa

This paper argues that the pattern of decolonisation in West Africa was a function of the nature of human capital transfers from the colonisers to the indigenous elites of the former colonies. Underpinning the nature of these human capital transfers is the colonial educational ideology. Where this ideology emphasized the notion of "assimilation", the system generally tended to produce elites that depended highly on the coloniser for their livelihood, hence necessitating a continuation of the imperial relationship even after independence was granted.

Returns to Schooling: Skills Accumulation or Information Revelation?

This paper explores the degree to which imperfect information in the labour market regarding worker quality is likely to impact employment opportunities, as well as the wages associated with those opportunities. The primary purpose of this paper is to provide preliminary empirical evidence that market imperfections exist in South Africa's labour market, that those imperfections could be based on asymmetric private information, and that market participants pursue information gathering and revelation strategies to help mitigate the negative effects of the information asymmetries.

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