Can a Standardized Aptitude Test Predict Training Success of Apprentices? Evidence from a Case Study in Switzerland

ETH Swiss Economic Institute KOF Working Paper No. 270

36 Pages Posted: 12 Feb 2011 Last revised: 25 Mar 2011

See all articles by Michael Siegenthaler

Michael Siegenthaler

ETH Zürich - KOF Swiss Economic Institute

Date Written: February 9, 2011

Abstract

Due to a widely spread distrust in the signaling value of school grades, Swiss employers require external, standardized aptitude test results when recruiting new apprentices. However, the predictive quality of such test results has never been thoroughly researched. Therefore, this case study analyses whether external aptitude tests can improve the quality of predicting success in apprenticeship training. I find that such information is a) not correlated with school grades at the end of compulsory schooling but b) does not add information that would explain either the success in VET schooling (school grades in the first and second year of apprenticeship training), the probability of unexcused vocational school absences or the likelihood of a premature ending of the apprenticeship contract.

Keywords: Apprenticeship, Hiring, Aptitude Test, Predictive Validity, Screening

JEL Classification: I21, J24, M51, M53

Suggested Citation

Siegenthaler, Michael, Can a Standardized Aptitude Test Predict Training Success of Apprentices? Evidence from a Case Study in Switzerland (February 9, 2011). ETH Swiss Economic Institute KOF Working Paper No. 270, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1759561 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1759561

Michael Siegenthaler (Contact Author)

ETH Zürich - KOF Swiss Economic Institute ( email )

Zurich
Switzerland

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