Is Early Educational Tracking Efficient? Short and Long Term International Evidence

IZA Logo

IZA Seminar

Place: Schaumburg-Lippe-Str. 9, 53113 Bonn

Date: 08.09.2016, 12:15 - 13:30


Presentation by 

Roxanne Korthals (Maastricht University)


We investigate age at academic tracking on short and long term effects individual outcomes. Identification stems from the differential effect of relative age on the probability of selection into lower tracks across early and late tracking countries. Using internationally comparable data (PISA), we show that relatively younger students are more likely to be sent to low academic tracks in countries which select early. This is expected since i –relative age differences within a cohort matter for school success and ii –this difference naturally disappears as pupils becomes older. Test scores after tracking reveal that relatively younger students in early tracking countries do better than their peers in late tracking countries. We investigate if this has a long term impact on individual outcomes using international multi-cohort data (PIAAC) and here can exploit within country changes in tracking age to obtain causal estimates. The main persistent effect seems to be on income with relatively younger individual outperforming their older peers in early tracking countries.

For more information, please contact