Life Cycle Schooling and Dynamic Selection Bias: Models and Evidence for Five Cohorts

94 Pages Posted: 25 Jul 2000

See all articles by Stephen V. Cameron

Stephen V. Cameron

Columbia University - School of International & Public Affairs (SIPA)

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)

Date Written: January 1998

Abstract

This paper examines an empirical regularity found in many societies: that family influences on the probability of transiting from one grade level to the next diminish at higher levels of education. We examine the statistical model used to establish the empirical regularity and the intuitive behavioral interpretation often used to rationalize it. We show that the implicit economic model assumes myopia. The intuitive interpretive model is identified only by imposing arbitrary distributional assumptions onto the data. We produce an alternative choice-theoretic model with fewer parameters that rationalizes the same data and is not based on arbitrary distributional assumptions.

Suggested Citation

Cameron, Stephen and Heckman, James J., Life Cycle Schooling and Dynamic Selection Bias: Models and Evidence for Five Cohorts (January 1998). NBER Working Paper No. w6385. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=226133

Stephen Cameron (Contact Author)

Columbia University - School of International & Public Affairs (SIPA) ( email )

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James J. Heckman

University of Chicago - Department of Economics ( email )

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CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

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