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Schools, Skills, and Synapses

94 Pages Posted: 9 Jun 2008 Last revised: 13 Jun 2008

James J. Heckman

University of Chicago - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); American Bar Foundation; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

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Date Written: June 2008

Abstract

This paper discusses (a) the role of cognitive and noncognitive ability in shaping adult outcomes, (b) the early emergence of differentials in abilities between children of advantaged families and children of disadvantaged families, (c) the role of families in creating these abilities, (d) adverse trends in American families, and (e) the effectiveness of early interventions in offsetting these trends. Practical issues in the design and implementation of early childhood programs are discussed.

Suggested Citation

Heckman, James J., Schools, Skills, and Synapses (June 2008). NBER Working Paper No. w14064. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1142236

James J. Heckman (Contact Author)

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CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

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