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Resits in Higher Education: Merely a Bar to Jump Over, or Do They Give a Pedagogical `Leg Up’?

Steven Proud ()

Bristol Economics Discussion Papers from School of Economics, University of Bristol, UK

Abstract: When students fail an examination at the end of their first year, they are offered a free resit examination, which they merely need to pass to progress into the second year. These resits anecdotally provide a dual purpose of testing that students have achieved the required level of attainment to progress, and to incentivise additional effort from these low attaining students. This paper uses regression discontinuity design to attempt to estimate the effect of resits in first year statistics with econometrics examinations on future outcomes. Whilst resits alone appear to make zero significant effect on outcomes, students who perform well on the resit examination perform 0.7 standard deviations better in second year microeconomics than similar students who do not receive resit examinations. These effects, if replicated more widely, could be worth up to £48,000 across the lifetime of each student.

Keywords: resits; examinations; economics. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: A22 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 31 pages
Date: 2014-07
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-edu
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Forthcoming in Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education.

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