NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Silvia Robles

Mathematica
220 E. Huron St.
Ann Arbor, Mich 48104

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Institutional Affiliation: Mathematica

NBER Working Papers and Publications

October 2019The Effect of Course Shutouts on Community College Students: Evidence from Waitlist Cutoffs
with Max Gross, Robert W. Fairlie: w26376
One frequently cited yet understudied channel through which money matters for college students is course availability- colleges may respond to budgetary pressure by reducing course offerings. Open admissions policies, binding class size constraints, and heavy reliance on state funding may make this channel especially salient at community colleges, which enroll 47% of U.S. undergraduates in public colleges and 55% of underrepresented minority students. We use administrative course registration data from a large community college in California to test this mechanism. By exploiting discontinuities in course admissions created by waitlists, we find that students stuck on a waitlist and shut out of a course section were 25% more likely to take zero courses that term relative to a baseline of 10...
March 2018Estimating the Effects of a Large For-Profit Charter School Operator
with Susan Dynarski, Daniel Hubbard, Brian Jacob: w24428
In this paper, we leverage randomized admissions lotteries to estimate the impact of attending a National Heritage Academy (NHA) charter school. NHA is the fourth largest for-profit charter operator in the country, enrolling more than 56,000 students in 86 schools across 9 states. Unlike several of the other large for-profit companies that operate virtual charters, NHA only has standard bricks-and-mortar schools. Our estimates indicate that attending a NHA charter school for one additional year is associated with a 0.04 standard deviation increase in math achievement. Effects on other outcomes are smaller and not statistically significant. In contrast to most prior charter school research that finds the largest benefits for low-income, underrepresented minorities in urban areas, the benefi...
 
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