This guide has been compiled to support students in their course work for ECON 239 Human Capital and Economics of Education
This guide is maintained by Melody Chin.
Human capital refers to the attributes gained by a worker through education and experience. Given the many years we devote to education, this course begins by asking “Why do individuals take up education?”, “Is education productive or does it only act as a signal of ability?”. The general preoccupation of the course will be with the use of qualitative and quantitative methods to answer issues in the field of Economics of Education.
Topics covered would range from school quality, class size, racial and gender achievement gap to early childhood education, peer effects, cash incentives, social value of education and education policies. Students will learn the basic theory underlying these topics and various empirical approaches to hypothesis testing. The course should be suitable for third and fourth year students interested in both applied microeconomics and public policy analysis. Students should finish the course with a strong grasp of the major debates in the economics of education be able to build an analytical framework for thinking about education policy.