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Geography, choice and participation in higher education in England

Gibbons, Stephen ORCID: 0000-0002-2871-8562 and Vignoles, Anna (2012) Geography, choice and participation in higher education in England. Regional Science and Urban Economics, 42 (1-2). pp. 98-113. ISSN 0166-0462

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Identification Number: 10.1016/j.regsciurbeco.2011.07.004


Geographical distance between parental home and college poses a potential barrier to higher education entry, and could be a deciding factor when choosing between institutions. Low income and ethnic minority groups are often considered to be especially constrained in their education choices because they need to stay at home for financial or cultural reasons. This paper provides new quantitative evidence on these issues from England. It improves on previous studies by using a large administrative data set on a population of school leavers and by using methods that allow for great flexibility in the way that student characteristics might influence choices. Our findings are that geographical distance has little or no impact on the decision to participate in England, but has a strong influence on institutional choice. Institution attendance probabilities fall with distance from home, with an elasticity of - 1. Small, but potentially important differences between student groups have implications for the sorting of students across institutions, and hence the spatial distribution of human capital.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2011 Elsevier
Divisions: Geography & Environment
Spatial Economics Research Centre
Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
JEL classification: I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I2 - Education
R - Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics > R0 - General
Date Deposited: 13 Oct 2011 15:44
Last Modified: 16 Jul 2024 20:42

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