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College admissions with entrance exams: centralized versus decentralized

[working paper]

Hafalir, Isa E.; Hakimov, Rustamdjan; Kübler, Dorothea; Kurino, Morimitsu

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Please use the following Persistent Identifier (PID) to cite this document:http://hdl.handle.net/10419/103212

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Corporate Editor Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung gGmbH
Abstract We theoretically and experimentally study a college admissions problem in which colleges accept students by ranking students' efforts in entrance exams. Students hold private information regarding their ability level that affects the cost of their efforts. We assume that student preferences are homogeneous over colleges. By modeling college admissions as contests, we solve and compare the equilibria of "centralized college admissions" (CCA) in which students apply to all colleges, and "decentralized college admissions" (DCA) in which students can only apply to one college. We show that lower ability students prefer DCA whereas higher ability students prefer CCA. The main qualitative predictions of the theory are supported by the experimental data, yet we find a number of behavioral differences between the mechanisms that render DCA less attractive than CCA compared to the equilibrium benchmark. (author's abstract)
Keywords competition; student union; experiment; student; entrance examination; university; performance; level of education; costs; college; centralization; decentralization; behavior; ranking
Classification University Education; Social Psychology
Document language English
Publication Year 2014
City Berlin
Page/Pages 48 p.
Series Discussion Papers / Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung, Forschungsschwerpunkt Markt und Entscheidung, Abteilung Verhalten auf Märkten, SP II 2014-208
Status Published Version; reviewed
Licence Deposit Licence - No Redistribution, No Modifications