Returns to higher education subjects and tiers in China: Evidence from the China Family Panel Studies

Lili Kang, Fei Peng, Yu Zhu (Lead / Corresponding author)

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    16 Citations (Scopus)
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    Abstract

    Using the China Family Panel Studies, we identify the subjects studied by vocational college and university graduates, with the latter group further divided into ordinary and key universities. While the returns are around 8-10% to attending colleges and ordinary universities, there are higher returns of 12-16% per annum to attending the more prestigious key universities. The recent massive expansion of the higher education sector resulted in reduced returns to all HE types, except for graduates who studied subjects other than LEM (law, economics, and management) or STEM (sciences, technology, engineering and math/medicine) at key universities.

    We further account for selection on observables into subjects and tiers using the doubly robust Inverse Probability Weighted Regression Adjustment method (IPWRA) approach. While these results are tentative, they suggest that pooled OLS and random-effect models substantially underestimate the effect of attending universities that are more prestigious for graduates of both genders in LEM.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1682-1695
    Number of pages14
    JournalStudies in Higher Education
    Volume46
    Issue number8
    Early online date11 Dec 2019
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2021

    Keywords

    • China
    • Higher Education expansion
    • Inverse Probability Weighted Regression Adjustment
    • Returns to university tier and subjects

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Education

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