Does Educational Tracking Affect Performance and Inequality? Differences-in-Differences Evidence Across Countries

14 Pages Posted: 8 May 2006

See all articles by Eric A. Hanushek

Eric A. Hanushek

Stanford University - Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Ludger Woessmann

Ifo Institute for Economic Research; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research); University of Munich - Ifo Institute for Economic Research

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Date Written: 0000

Abstract

Even though some countries track students into differing-ability schools by age 10, others keep their entire secondary-school system comprehensive. To estimate the effects of such institutional differences in the face of country heterogeneity, we employ an international differences-in-differences approach. We identify tracking effects by comparing differences in outcome between primary and secondary school across tracked and non-tracked systems. Six international student assessments provide eight pairs of achievement contrasts for between 18 and 26 cross-country comparisons. The results suggest that early tracking increases educational inequality. While less clear, there is also a tendency for early tracking to reduce mean performance.

Suggested Citation

Hanushek, Eric A. and Woessmann, Ludger, Does Educational Tracking Affect Performance and Inequality? Differences-in-Differences Evidence Across Countries (0000). The Economic Journal, Vol. 116, pp. C63-C76, March 2006. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=887619 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0297.2006.01076.x

Eric A. Hanushek (Contact Author)

Stanford University - Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305-6010
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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

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Ludger Woessmann

Ifo Institute for Economic Research ( email )

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Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

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CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

University of Munich - Ifo Institute for Economic Research

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Munich, 80539
Germany

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