The Role of Social and Emotional Adjustment in Mediating the Relationship Between Early Experiences and Different Language Outcomes

This paper looks at how the home learning environment of very young children might affect their language and communication skills later on. The research draws on data from 5,000 children born in Scotland in 2003 to examine the links between how depressed or stressed parents were, the home learning environment of their child at age … Read more

The intergenerational transmission of family dissolution – and how it varies by social class origin and birth cohort

This research investigates whether the social class of divorced parents has any bearing on the likelihood of their children also getting divorced. Specifically it seeks to establish whether having more advantaged parents makes divorcing less likely thereby weakening the intergenerational transmission of divorce. It finds it does not. The researchers analyse 38,000 life histories from … Read more

Upper secondary tracks and student competencies: A selection or a causal effect? Evidence from the Italian case

This piece of research examines whether Italian students’ choice of educational track has a causal effect on general skills in reading and mathematics. The research, which relies on a population-level longitudinal dataset, looks at the choices students make at age 14 between four tracks: classical and scientific studies, a general humanistic track, technical, and vocational … Read more

Explaining gender segregation in higher education: longitudinal evidence on the French case

This article asks why gender gaps persist in higher education even though women’s attainment is higher than men’s across the OECD, and even though gender gaps at work are narrowing. Women are still under-represented in subjects such as engineering and computing, and over-represented in human sciences and humanities. The article tests a number of theories … Read more

Does ability grouping affect UK primary school pupils’ enjoyment of Maths and English?

Authors: Vikki Boliver, Queralt Capsada-Munsech,
Issue: 2022

This paper looks at how pupils’ enjoyment of the subjects they study is affected by the ability groups in which they are placed. Using data from the Millennium Cohort Study, which follows a sample of children born in the UK between 2000 and 2002, it finds those in a low ability group were less likely … Read more

Addressing inequalities early in life

The trajectory of a human’s life course is by no means determined at birth. Nevertheless, the circumstances a child is born into and events taking place during the early childhood, or even gestation, shape life-course trajectories. A substantial amount of research in the Dynamics of Inequality Across the Life-course (DIAL) research programme has examined what … Read more

Dynastic Human Capital, Inequality and Intergenerational Mobility

The transmission of human capital between generations has been much studied, but most research has focused on what parents pass on to their children. This study creates a much fuller picture of these effects by examining data on four generations of extended families in Sweden. It concludes previous research has very much underestimated the influence … Read more

Long-term labor market returns to upper secondary school track choice: Leveraging idiosyncratic variation in peers’ choices

This study looks at the possible benefits and disadvantages of choosing a vocational rather than an academic track in upper secondary education. While supporters of vocational education and training (VET) say it can provide a safety net for those at risk of dropping out of education or failing to enter the labour market, critics say … Read more

Educational tracking and personality formation: Evidence from a dual system

Authors: Jesper Fels Birkelund,
Issue: 2022

Research on the effects of educational selection has tended to focus on how it affects academic development and achievement. This project asks a different question: does the educational track on which we are placed as teenagers affect the development of personality traits? Personality traits continue to develop throughout the adolescent and early adult years, and … Read more

Stressful Life Events, Differential Vulnerability, and Depressive Symptoms: Critique and New Evidence

This paper considers whether women and less well-educated individuals are more vulnerable to the impacts of stressful life events on mental health. It finds they are not. Taking a new approach to researching life stress using data from a UK household survey, the research sets out to replicate and then go beyond previous work which … Read more