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Quasi-Experimental Methods

Over the past 30 years, mountains of data and statistics on the achievement of students and performance of schools have become available to both the public and the researchers. In addition, recent reforms at the local, state, and national levels have led to unique policies being implemented in a wide variety of contexts. Understanding the benefits of such policies is paramount in improving the efficiency of public education in the United States, in particular, as states seek new approaches to improve student achievement with budgets that are constrained and often shrinking. With these factors in mind, this entry discusses quasi-experimental econometric approaches in the economics of education. Such approaches include difference-in-difference modeling, instrumental variables (IV), regression discontinuity, and propensity score matching (PSM). Recently, several methods ...

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