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The declining relative importance of ability in predicting educational attainment

Galindo-Rueda, Fernando and Vignoles, Anna (2005) The declining relative importance of ability in predicting educational attainment. Journal of Human Resources, 40 (2). pp. 335-353. ISSN 0022-166X

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Most countries seek to reduce inequality by encouraging educational attain- ment, particularly by striving for better outcomes for able individuals from poor backgrounds. We analyse whether this has been a feature of Britain's substantial expansion of education during the past several decades. We use two unique longitudinal studies to test whether these improvements have been associated with changes in the role of cognitive ability and parental background in determining educational achievement. We find a decline in the importance of ability in explaining educational performance, in part because low ability children with high economic status experienced the largest increases in educational attainment.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2005 Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System
Divisions: Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
L Education > L Education (General)
Date Deposited: 18 Dec 2009 13:57
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 00:23

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