Human Development

Can we select the right peers in Indian education? Evidence from Kolkata

  • Blog Post Date 31 December, 2014
  • IGC Research on India
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Paul Frijters

University of Queensland

This project studies the effect of random dormitory assignment in a tertiary-level educational institution in India on subsequent academic achievements. The effects of peer-ability are around one-third as high as that of own-ability, with effects increasing with assortative matching. It finds that students from non-urban and non-English backgrounds do particularly better in higher education when assigned higher-ability peers. The effects of both randomly-allocated roommates and self-nominated friends play a significant role in the education production process, mainly through social interactions such as group discussions.

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