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SHOULD I STAY OR SHOULD I GO? DROPPING OUT FROM UNIVERSITY: AN EMPIRICAL ANALYSIS OF STUDENTS’ PERFORMANCES

Roberto Zotti ()

No 70, Working Papers from AlmaLaurea Inter-University Consortium

Abstract: A strong incentive for studying the dropout phenomenon in the context of Italian tertiary education, both from the positive standpoint and from the regulatory one, is because higher education institutions are evaluated and then financially supported also on the base of parameters such as the dropout rate, especially between the first and the second year. An econometric analysis of factors that affect the decision to drop out has been made, using administrative data on students enrolled in post-reform courses at University of Salerno in the academic year 2003/2004. Focusing on very detailed individual information, the database allows to take into account changes in university attendance decisions year by year and to provide a precise identification of the students who drop out. Moreover a non-selective entrance test score has also been taken into account in order to understand weather it could successfully predict and reduce dropout rates. Evidence that the pre-enrollment characteristics and performances play an important role on the students’ decision to drop out has been found out. Moreover, the students’ non-selective entrance test scores seem to be a good signal of the students’ ability. They could well predict the student’s future performances suggesting their use to improve the matching between students and their individual specific curricula.

Keywords: Probit estimation; Student drop-out (non-completition) probabilities; University performance; Selective entry test (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I20 I21 I23 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-edu and nep-eur
Date: 2015-01
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