'High'-School: The Relationship between Early Marijuana Use and Educational Outcomes

41 Pages Posted: 26 Nov 2013 Last revised: 27 Nov 2013

See all articles by Deborah A. Cobb-Clark

Deborah A. Cobb-Clark

School of Economics, University of Sydney; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Sonja C. Kassenboehmer

Monash University - Centre for Health Economics

Trinh Le

Motu Economic and Public Policy Research Trust

Duncan McVicar

Queen's University Belfast; Queen's University Belfast - Queen's Management School

Rong Zhang

Monash Business School; Nishinippon Institute of Technology

Date Written: October 2013

Abstract

We use unique survey data linked to nearly a decade of administrative welfare data to examine the relationship between early marijuana use (at age 14 or younger) and young people’s educational outcomes. We find evidence that early marijuana use is related to educational penalties that are compounded by high-intensity use and are larger for young people living in families with a history of welfare receipt. The relationships between marijuana use and both high school completion and achieving a university entrance score appear to stem from selectivity into the use of marijuana. In contrast, early marijuana use is associated with significantly lower university entrance score for those who obtain one and we provide evidence that this effect is unlikely to be driven by selection. Collectively, these findings point to a more nuanced view of the relationship between adolescent marijuana use and educational outcomes than is suggested by the existing literature.

Keywords: Marijuana, cannabis, educational achievement, educational attainment, socioeconomic

JEL Classification: I20, I24, I10, I18

Suggested Citation

Cobb-Clark, Deborah A. and Kassenboehmer, Sonja C. and Le, Trinh and McVicar, Duncan and Zhang, Rong, 'High'-School: The Relationship between Early Marijuana Use and Educational Outcomes (October 2013). Melbourne Institute Working Paper No. 38/13. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2359183 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2359183

Deborah A. Cobb-Clark

School of Economics, University of Sydney ( email )

606 Social Sciences Bldg. (A02)
The University of Sydney
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia
61435061387 (Phone)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Sonja C. Kassenboehmer (Contact Author)

Monash University - Centre for Health Economics ( email )

Building 75, 15 Innovation Walk
Monash University
Clayton, Victoria 3800
Australia

Trinh Le

Motu Economic and Public Policy Research Trust ( email )

Level 1, 93 Cuba Street
P.O. Box 24390
Wellington, 6142
New Zealand

Duncan McVicar

Queen's University Belfast ( email )

25 University Square
Belfast, BT7 1NN
Ireland

Queen's University Belfast - Queen's Management School

Riddel Hall
185 Stranmillis Road
Belfast, BT9 5EE
United Kingdom

Rong Zhang

Monash Business School ( email )

Wellington Road
Clayton, Victoria 3168
Australia

Nishinippon Institute of Technology ( email )

1-2-11, Muromachi, Kokura-kita,
Kitakyushu, Fukuoka Prefecture 803-8787
Japan

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
109
Abstract Views
699
rank
246,805
PlumX Metrics