Hungry for Success? Snap Timing, High-Stakes Exam Performance, and College Attendance

52 Pages Posted: 27 Jan 2021 Last revised: 30 Jan 2021

See all articles by Timothy Bond

Timothy Bond

Purdue University - Department of Economics

Jillian Carr

Purdue University - Krannert School of Management

Analisa Packham

Texas A&M University - Department of Economics

Jonathan Smith

Georgia State University

Date Written: January 2021

Abstract

Monthly government transfer programs create cycles of consumption that track the timing of benefit receipt. In this paper, we exploit state-level variation in the staggered timing of nutritional assistance benefit issuance across households to analyze how this monthly cyclicality in food availability affects academic achievement. Using individual-level score data from a large national college admissions exam in the United States linked to national college enrollment data, we find that taking this high-stakes exam in the last two weeks of the SNAP benefit cycle reduces test scores and lowers the probability of attending a 4-year college for low-income high school students.

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Suggested Citation

Bond, Timothy and Carr, Jillian and Packham, Analisa and Smith, Jonathan, Hungry for Success? Snap Timing, High-Stakes Exam Performance, and College Attendance (January 2021). NBER Working Paper No. w28386, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3772633

Timothy Bond (Contact Author)

Purdue University - Department of Economics ( email )

West Lafayette, IN 47907-1310
United States

Jillian Carr

Purdue University - Krannert School of Management ( email )

1310 Krannert Building
West Lafayette, IN 47907-1310
United States

Analisa Packham

Texas A&M University - Department of Economics ( email )

5201 University Blvd.
College Station, TX 77843-4228
United States

Jonathan Smith

Georgia State University ( email )

GA
United States

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

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