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ES30082: Economics of education

Follow this link for further information on academic years Academic Year: 2013/4
Further information on owning departmentsOwning Department/School: Department of Economics
Further information on credits Credits: 6
Further information on unit levels Level: Honours (FHEQ level 6)
Further information on teaching periods Period: Semester 1
Further information on unit assessment Assessment: EX 80%, OT 20%
Further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment: Reassessment exam (where allowed by programme regulations)
Further information on requisites Requisites: You must take ES20069 either before or whilst taking this unit.
Further information on descriptions Description: Aims:
The aim of the course is to familiarize students with topics in economics of education and to develop students' ability to apply economics and quantitative (econometric) research methods to the analysis of educational issues in order to:
* Critically appraise research in the economics of education;
* Evaluate specific educational policies;
* Prepare students for own research in this area.

Learning Outcomes:
By the end of the course, the students should:
* Have complete understanding of different theoretically-motivated empirics and data-driven theories in the field of economics of education;
* Be able to develop and apply economic models to the analysis of education markets, in particular the demand for education (the rate of return to education) and its interaction with the supply of education (education production functions);
* Have sufficient knowledge in order to empirically investigate different research questions in this area;
* Be able to develop valid research designs for the evaluation of policy interventions by having a sound understanding of modelling, the problems of recovering estimates of causal effects from data generated via social experiments, natural experiments and from non-experimental settings and the role of qualitative data in understanding processes underlying causal effects;
* The student should excel own knowledge in particular areas of microeconometrics (eg, instrumental variables estimator, difference-in-differences estimator, programme evaluation, etc.) ;
* Know the main sources of data sets used for research in economics of education and how to access such secondary data;
* Be able to conduct valid statistical analysis of models using specified data and software packages (Stata).

Intellectual skills
* Comprehension, analysis, logical reasoning, argument, synthesis and the evaluation of viewpoints in relation to education policy from an economics perspective;
* Understanding and applying the research skills of evaluating evidence in relation to the testing of hypotheses about association and causality between variables;
* Clarity and accuracy in oral and written communication;
* Developing both socially and more independently the skills of academic study and enquiry.
Professional skills
* Understanding and critiquing a range of methods of economic appraisal and evaluation applied to education;
* Making informed judgments regarding education policy and policy formulation;
* ICT skills in obtaining and evaluating information from the internet and in using software to manipulate, interpret and present quantitative data.

This course gives an overview of some important topics in the field of labour economics in general and economics of education in particular, with a strong emphasis on theoretically-motivated empirics or data-driven theory. The selected topics are at the edge of current research focus in economics of education. The preliminary content summary is as follows:
1. Stylised Facts: Education and the Labour Market
* Education at a Glance, OECD 2007
* Statistical Yearbook and World Education Report, UNESCO
2. Human Capital Models & Empirical Estimation of the Earnings Function
* Hanushek (1981), Becker (1975), Mincer (1974)
* Mincer's regression: Card (1999), Heckman, Lochner and Todd (2006)
* IV approach: Angrist and Krueger (1991), Duflo (2001)
* Twins: Ashenfelter and Krueger (1994), Bound and Solon (1999), Griliches (1979)
3. Returns to School Quality
* Card and Krueger (1992), Krueger (1999), Krueger and Whitmore (2001), Dale and Krueger (2002), Hanushek (2003), Dearden et al. (2002), Black and Smith (2006)
4. Screening & Signalling
* Spence (1973), Tyler, Murnane and Willett (2000), Cameron and Heckman (1993)
5. Returns to job training & ALMP
* Ashenfelter (1978), Heckman et al. (1999), Dearden et al. (2006), Deheija and Wahba (1999), LaLonde (1986), Smith and Todd (2006)
6. Early childhood education & Inttervention policies
* Heckman and Masterov (2007), Carnerio and Heckman (2003), Heckman (2008)
7. Class Size and Peer effects.
* Class size: Krueger (1999), Hanushek (1999), Angrist and Lavy (1999)
* Peer effects: Hoxby (2001), Sacerdote (2001)
8. School competition, school choice and school performance
* Hoxby (2000), Rothstein (2007), Gibbons, Machin, and Silva (2008)
9. Intergenerational mobility of education
* Black, Devereux and Salvanes (2005), Plug (2004), Behrman and Rosenzweig (2002)
10. Social returns to schooling
* Crime: Lochner and Moretti (2004), Machin, Marie and Vujić (2011)
* Health: Oreopoulos (2007), Adriana Lleras-Muney (2005), Lundborg (2008)
* Civic engagement and attitudes in democracy: Dee (2004)
Further information on programme availabilityProgramme availability:

ES30082 is Optional on the following programmes:

Department of Economics
  • UHES-AFB03 : BSc (hons) Economics (Full-time) - Year 3
  • UHES-AKB03 : BSc (hons) Economics (Full-time with Thick Sandwich Placement) - Year 4
  • UHES-AFB02 : BSc (hons) Economics and International Development (Full-time) - Year 3
  • UHES-AKB02 : BSc (hons) Economics and International Development (Full-time with Thick Sandwich Placement) - Year 4
  • UHES-AFB01 : BSc (hons) Economics and Politics (Full-time) - Year 3
  • UHES-AKB01 : BSc (hons) Economics and Politics (Full-time with Thick Sandwich Placement) - Year 4

* This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2013/4 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2014/15 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2013/14.
* Programmes and units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.
* Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.