EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Educational Decisions as Rational Choice? An Empirical Test of the Erikson-Jonsson Model for Explaining Educational Attainment

Volker Stocké ()
Additional contact information
Volker Stocké: Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Postal: L 13, 15, D-68131 Mannheim

No 08-03, Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications from Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim

Abstract: This article tests the prediction from the Erikson-Jonsson (EJ) rational-choice model that altogether eight financial as well as non-financial dimensions of costs and returns of education, as well as the probability of being able to successfully realise educational credential simultaneously explain educational decisions. Among the included returns is a new measure for the families’ motive to avoid intergenerational status demotion. Furthermore, we test the pivotal assumption of instrumental rationality being the mechanism underlying educational selections. In this case, pupils do not take returns and success probabilities independently, but mutely weighted and in interaction into account. We test these hypotheses with data from the Mannheim Educational Panel Study about the decision between secondary school tracks in Germany. Results show that the probability of success, one financial but five non-financial kinds of costs and returns associated with educational degrees simultaneously explain educational decisions. Returns from reduced unemployment risks and financial costs prove to be irrelevant. Actors are more sensitive to all relevant returns if the respective educational track is more likely to be successfully completed. Results provide strong evidence for instrumental rationality being one important mechanism underlying educational decisions.

Pages: 34 pages
Date: 2008-03-21
Note: Acknowledgments: Stimulating discussions with Hartmut Esser, Rolf Becker, Yossi Shavit and Meir Yaish are gratefully acknowledged. Diana Braunwarth, Kerstin Hönig and Diana Schirowski were a great help in preparing the manuscript. Financial support from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, SFB 504, at the University of Mannheim, is gratefully acknowledged.
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed

There are no downloads for this item, see the EconPapers FAQ for hints about obtaining it.

Related works:
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:xrs:sfbmaa:08-03

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications from Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim Contact information at EDIRC., Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Carsten Schmidt (). This e-mail address is bad, please contact .

 
Page updated 2020-02-16
Handle: RePEc:xrs:sfbmaa:08-03