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Title: Essays on Family and Public Policies
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1. Shen, Sophie Danqing
Essays on Family and Public Policies
Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Economics, Purdue University, 2018
Cohort(s): NLSY79
Publisher: ProQuest Dissertations & Theses (PQDT)
Keyword(s): Age at First Marriage; College Characteristics; College Degree; Divorce; Marriage; Test Scores/Test theory/IRT

Permission to reprint the abstract has not been received from the publisher.

The third chapter investigates the impact of post-secondary college education quality on marriage outcomes. Using NLSY79 data, an instrumental variable strategy is employed to identify the causal effect. College quality is measured as the average SAT score of the entering freshman class of the degree-granting school. A better college education is associated with stabler marriages, later first marriages, and a lower likelihood of remarriages. I also find that it has no impact on the probability of marriage. Among people who obtained a college degree before age 25, a 100-point increase in SAT score leads to an increase in the age at first marriage by 4 years. In addition, people with higher quality of college education are 25 and 23 percentage points less likely to get divorced and divorce before 40, respectively, than those with a 100-point lower quality of college education. Additionally, better-educated people have 26% fewer number of marriages than their counterparts. Since the number of college graduates have been growing up over time, this article provides a new perspective to understand the trends of marriage and divorce.
Bibliography Citation
Shen, Sophie Danqing. Essays on Family and Public Policies. Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Economics, Purdue University, 2018.