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Own Motivation, Peer Motivation, and Educational Success

Jan Bietenbeck

No 8696, CESifo Working Paper Series from CESifo

Abstract: I study how motivation shapes own and peers’ educational success. Using data from Project STAR, I find that academic motivation in early elementary school, as measured by a standardized psychological test, predicts contemporaneous and future test scores, high school GPA, and college-test taking over and above cognitive skills. Exploiting random assignment of students to classes, I find that exposure to motivated classmates causally affects contemporaneous reading achievement, a peer effect that operates over and above spillovers from classmates’ past achieve-ment and socio-demographic composition. However, peer motivation does not affect longer-term educational success, likely because it does not change own motivation.

Keywords: motivation; personality; peer effects; Project STAR (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I21 J13 J24 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-edu, nep-hrm, nep-net and nep-ure
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