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Socioeconomic Status and Education

Although the concept of socioeconomic status (SES) is addressed more widely outside economics than within it, an expansive body of research across disciplines documents the educational utility of SES. Specifically within the field of economics of education, SES is a key input to the education production function often applied to consider how various resources measured among students, within classrooms, and across schools and communities can affect student outcomes. What interests economists of education is to go into the “black box” of education and determine how SES inputs matter in terms of affecting traditional student outcomes such as educational achievement or attainment and workplace performance. Outputs linked to SES in the education production function have, however, also included physical and mental health and, more recently, socioemotional ...

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