Temperature and High-Stakes Cognitive Performance: Evidence From The National College Entrance Examination in China

36 Pages Posted: 5 Dec 2018 Last revised: 6 Dec 2018

See all articles by Joshua Graff Zivin

Joshua Graff Zivin

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Graduate School of International Relations and Pacific Studies (IRPS); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Yingquan Song

Peking University

Peng Zhang

Hong Kong Polytechnic University - School of Accounting and Finance

Qu Tang

Jinan University

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: July 1, 2018

Abstract

We provide the first nation-wide estimates on temperature effects on high-stakes cognitive performance in a developing country using data from the National College Entrance Examination (NCEE) in China. The NCEE is one of the most important institutions in China and affects hundreds of millions of families. We find that a one-standard-deviation increase in temperature (3.29° C) decreases the total test score by 1.12% (9.62% of a standard deviation) and decreases the probability of getting into first-tier universities by 1.97% (4.38% of a standard deviation). This suggests that temperature plays an important role in high-stakes cognitive performance and has potentially far-reaching impacts for the careers and lifetime earnings of students.

Suggested Citation

Graff Zivin, Joshua and Song, Yingquan and Zhang, Peng and Tang, Qu, Temperature and High-Stakes Cognitive Performance: Evidence From The National College Entrance Examination in China (July 1, 2018). 21st Century China Center Research Paper No. 2018-08. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3296057 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3296057

Joshua Graff Zivin (Contact Author)

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - Graduate School of International Relations and Pacific Studies (IRPS) ( email )

9500 Gilman Drive
La Jolla, CA 92093-0519
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Yingquan Song

Peking University ( email )

No. 38 Xueyuan Road
Haidian District
Beijing, Beijing 100871
China

Peng Zhang

Hong Kong Polytechnic University - School of Accounting and Finance ( email )

Hung Hom
Kowloon
Hong Kong

HOME PAGE: http://pengzhang.weebly.com

Qu Tang

Jinan University ( email )

Huang Pu Da Dao Xi 601, Tian He District
Guangzhou, 510632
China

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