HKS Authors

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This paper uses data from three prominent exam high schools in New York City to estimate the impact of attending a school with high-achieving peers on college enrollment and graduation. Our identification strategy exploits sharp discontinuities in the admissions process. Applicants just eligible for an exam school have peers that score 0.17 to 0.36 standard deviations higher on eighth grade state tests and that are 6.4 to 9.5 percentage points less likely to be black or Hispanic. However, exposure to these higher-achieving and more homogeneous peers has little impact on college enrollment, college graduation, or college quality.


Dobbie, Will and Roland Fryer. "The Impact of Attending a School with High-Achieving Peers: Evidence from the New York City Exam Schools." American Economic Journal: Applied Economics 6.3 (July 2014): 58-75.