Speaking in Numbers: The Effect of Reading Performance on Math Performance Among Immigrants

18 Pages Posted: 3 Dec 2015

See all articles by Ingo E. Isphording

Ingo E. Isphording

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Marc Piopiunik

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute) - Department Human Capital and Innovation

Núria Rodríguez-Planas

City University New York (CUNY), Queens College; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Date Written: November 9, 2015

Abstract

This paper is the first to estimate a causal effect of immigrant students’ reading performance on their math performance. To overcome endogeneity issues due to unobserved ability, we apply an IV approach exploiting variation in age-at-arrival and the linguistic distance between origin and destination country languages. Using four PISA waves, we find a strong influence of reading performance on math performance, highlighting the importance of early language support for immigrants for their educational career.

Keywords: immigrants, language, math performance, linguistic distance, age-at-arrival, instrumental variable

JEL Classification: I210, I240, Z130

Suggested Citation

Isphording, Ingo E. and Piopiunik, Marc and Rodriguez-Planas, Nuria, Speaking in Numbers: The Effect of Reading Performance on Math Performance Among Immigrants (November 9, 2015). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 5589, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2698587

Ingo E. Isphording (Contact Author)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

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

Marc Piopiunik

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute) - Department Human Capital and Innovation ( email )

Poschingerstr. 5
Munich, 81679
Germany

Nuria Rodriguez-Planas

City University New York (CUNY), Queens College ( email )

65-30 Kissena Blvd
Flushing, NY 11367-1597
United States

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

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

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