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Adolescent Drinking and High School Dropout


Pinka Chatterji


National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Jeffrey S. DeSimone


University of Texas at Arlington - College of Business Administration - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

May 2005

NBER Working Paper No. w11337

Abstract:     
This paper estimates the effect of binge and frequent drinking by adolescents on subsequent high school dropout using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 Young Adults. We estimate an instrumental variables model with an indicator of any past month alcohol use, which is by definition correlated with heavy drinking but should have minimal additional impact on educational outcomes, as the identifying instrument, and also control for a rich set of potentially confounding variables, including maternal characteristics and dropout risk factors measured before and during adolescence. In comparison, OLS provides conservative estimates of the causal impact of heavy drinking on dropping out, implying that binge or frequent drinking among 15 %uF81816 year old students lowers the probability of having graduated or being enrolled in high school four years later by at least 11 percent. Overidentification tests using two measures of maternal youthful alcohol use as additional instruments support our identification strategy.

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Date posted: June 15, 2005  

Suggested Citation

Chatterji, Pinka and DeSimone, Jeffrey S., Adolescent Drinking and High School Dropout (May 2005). NBER Working Paper No. w11337. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=723306

Contact Information

Pinka Chatterji (Contact Author)
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Jeffrey S. DeSimone
University of Texas at Arlington - College of Business Administration - Department of Economics ( email )
Box 19479 UTA
Arlington, TX 76019
United States
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
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