Every Little Bit Counts: The Impact of High-Speed Internet on the Transition to College

58 Pages Posted: 2 Dec 2015

See all articles by Lisa J. Dettling

Lisa J. Dettling

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Sarena Goodman

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Jonathan Smith

Georgia State University

Date Written: 2015-12-01

Abstract

This paper investigates the effects of high-speed Internet on students' college application decisions. We link the diffusion of zip code-level residential broadband Internet to millions of PSAT and SAT takers' college testing and application outcomes and find that students with access to high-speed Internet in their junior year of high school perform better on the SAT and apply to a higher number and more expansive set of colleges. Effects appear to be concentrated among higher-SES students, indicating that while, on average, high-speed Internet improved students' postsecondary outcomes, it may have increased pre-existing inequities by primarily benefiting those with more resources.

Keywords: Broadband, College Choice, Undermatch

Suggested Citation

Dettling, Lisa J. and Goodman, Sarena and Smith, Jonathan, Every Little Bit Counts: The Impact of High-Speed Internet on the Transition to College (2015-12-01). FEDS Working Paper No. 2015-108. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2698071 or http://dx.doi.org/10.17016/FEDS.2015.108

Lisa J. Dettling (Contact Author)

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Sarena Goodman

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Jonathan Smith

Georgia State University ( email )

GA
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/site/jonathansmithphd/

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