EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

On the Interpretation of Non-cognitive Skills: What Is Being Measured and Why It Matters

John Humphries () and Fabian Kosse

No 876, SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research from DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP)

Abstract: Across academic sub-fields such as labor, education, and behavioral economics, the measurement and interpretation of non-cognitive skills varies widely. As a result, it is difficult to compare results on the importance of non-cognitive skills across literatures. Drawing from these literatures, this paper systematically relates various prototypical non-cognitive measures within one data set. Specifically, we estimate and compare several different strategies for measuring non-cognitive skills. For each, we compare their relative effectiveness at predicting educational success and decompose what is being measured into underlying personality traits and economic preferences. We demonstrate that the construction of the non-cognitive factor greatly influences what is actually measured and what conclusions are reached about the role of non-cognitive skills in life outcomes such as educational attainment. Furthermore, we demonstrate that, while sometimes difficult to interpret, factors extracted from self-reported behaviors can have predictive power similar to well established taxonomies, such as the Big Five.

Keywords: non-cognitive skills; personality; preferences; educational success (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J24 I20 D03 D90 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe and nep-neu
Date: 2016
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.548106.de/diw_sp0876.pdf (application/pdf)

Related works:
Journal Article: On the interpretation of non-cognitive skills – What is being measured and why it matters (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: On the interpretation of non-cognitive skills – what is being measured and why it matters (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: On the Interpretation of Non-Cognitive Skills: What Is Being Measured and Why It Matters (2016) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp876

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research from DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Bibliothek ().

 
Page updated 2019-04-20
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp876