Schools, Skills, and Synapses

36 Pages Posted: 8 Sep 2008

See all articles by James J. Heckman

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: 2008-08-29

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. (JEL A12)

Suggested Citation

Heckman, James J., Schools, Skills, and Synapses (2008-08-29). Economic Inquiry, Vol. 46, Issue 3, pp. 289-324, July 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1263073 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1465-7295.2008.00163.x

James J. Heckman (Contact Author)

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