You are here:

Ova and out: Using twins to estimate the educational returns to attending a selective college
ARTICLE

Economics of Education Review Volume 36, Number 1, ISSN 0272-7757 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd

Abstract

Research has shown that attending a relatively selective four-year college over a less selective alternative is positively related to bachelor's degree completion. This paper revisits that question with a novel dataset of over 11,000 sets of twins in the United States and information on colleges to which they apply, enroll, and potentially graduate. I show that a student's probability of bachelor's degree completion within four years increases by 5 percentage points by choosing an institution with a median SAT score 100 points higher than the alternative. Moreover, the estimated magnitude of impact is insensitive to several methodologies, including OLS, twin fixed effects, and controlling for the application portfolio. This suggests that in certain contexts, sources of bias perceived as barriers to obtaining causal estimates of the returns to college selectivity, such as unobserved family characteristics and student aspiration, may be of little concern.

Citation

Smith, J. (2013). Ova and out: Using twins to estimate the educational returns to attending a selective college. Economics of Education Review, 36(1), 166-180. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved April 19, 2021 from .

This record was imported from Economics of Education Review on January 28, 2019. Economics of Education Review is a publication of Elsevier.

Full text is availabe on Science Direct: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.econedurev.2013.06.008

Keywords