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Multigrading and child achievement


Barbetta, Gian Paolo; Sorrenti, Giuseppe; Turati, Gilberto (2019). Multigrading and child achievement. Working paper series / Department of Economics 275, University of Zurich.

Abstract

We study how multigrading, which is mixing students of different grades into a single class, affects children’s cognitive achievement in primary school. We build instruments to identify the causal effect of multigrading by exploiting an Italian law that controls class size and grade composition. Results suggest that attendance in multigrade versus single-grade classes increases students’ performance on standardized tests by 19 percent of a standard deviation for second graders, and it has zero effect for fifth graders. The positive impact of multigrading for second graders appears to be driven by children sharing their class with peers from higher grades. This last finding rationalizes the absence of a multigrade effect for fifth graders.

Abstract

We study how multigrading, which is mixing students of different grades into a single class, affects children’s cognitive achievement in primary school. We build instruments to identify the causal effect of multigrading by exploiting an Italian law that controls class size and grade composition. Results suggest that attendance in multigrade versus single-grade classes increases students’ performance on standardized tests by 19 percent of a standard deviation for second graders, and it has zero effect for fifth graders. The positive impact of multigrading for second graders appears to be driven by children sharing their class with peers from higher grades. This last finding rationalizes the absence of a multigrade effect for fifth graders.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Working Paper
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Working Paper Series > Department of Economics
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
JEL Classification:I26, I28, R53
Uncontrolled Keywords:Multigrade classes, child development, peer effects, rural areas
Language:English
Date:August 2019
Deposited On:24 Jan 2018 14:16
Last Modified:24 Sep 2019 23:11
Series Name:Working paper series / Department of Economics
Number of Pages:44
ISSN:1664-7041
Additional Information:Revised version
OA Status:Green
Official URL:http://www.econ.uzh.ch/static/workingpapers.php?id=954

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