DP10042 Gender Peer Effects in School, a Birth Cohort Approach

Author(s): Antonio Ciccone, Walter Garcia-Fontes
Publication Date: June 2014
Keyword(s): gender, grade retention, peer effects, school
JEL(s): I20
Programme Areas: Labour Economics, Public Economics
Link to this Page: www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=10042

We propose estimating gender peer effects in school by exploiting within-school variation in gender composition across birth cohorts. Our approach differs from the existing literature, which exploits variation in gender composition at a given grade level in different years. We argue that the birth cohort approach is a useful alternative as the grade level approach generally yields spurious gender peer effects when there is grade retention. The birth cohort approach applied to primary schools in Spain indicates statistically significant positive gender peer effects of girls on boys’ academic achievement and statistically insignificant effects of girls on girls’ achievement.