Monday 12
A2 - Education, development programs I
Chair: Paulo Bastos
› 10:40 - 11:05 (25min)
› Room 004 - T. Arbeau
The Effect of Modularisation on School Dropout: A Natural Experiment
Deni Mazrekaj  1, *@  , Kristof De Witte  1, 2@  
1 : KU Leuven [Leuven]  (KUL)  -  Website
Oude Markt 13 3000 Leuven -  Belgium
2 : Maastricht University  -  Website
Universiteitssingel 40;6200 MD Maastricht -  Netherlands
* : Corresponding author

Dividing a curriculum into smaller modules is increasingly used in secondary and higher education. This is believed to make a study program more attractive and more conformable to students' needs, resulting in lower school dropout. There is, however, little quantitative evidence to support this claim. This paper exploits a policy change in the Flemish region of Belgium to estimate the causal effect of modular curricula on school dropout in secondary vocational education and training. Using a difference-in-differences design, we find that modularisation may significantly increase high school dropout in vocational education by 0.181 percentage points. This effect appears to be mainly driven by female students as modularisation may slightly reduce dropout for male students. Overall, our findings suggest that modularisation is likely to be an ineffective policy to combat early school leaving.



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