Thursday, April 01, 2010

Assorted Links

1. Last week Obama unveiled a $14 billion plan to help troubled homeowners

2. Need cash in a hurry. Don't worry; you can get it here, within 15 minutes. Only in the UK.

3. Leisure College, USA

4. Human Behavior and Economics: A Survey of Recent Literature, 1914

5. An analysis of the Graduate Labour Market in Finland: the impact of Spatial Agglomeration and Skill-Job Mismatches

6. Linguistic Elitism and Gender in the Irish Labour Market: How much Advantage is there to Workers in Ireland Speaking Irish and being Male? Evidence from the 2006 Census

7. College fee regime to change in US

8. Identity Economics and Life Reconstruction


Kevin Denny said...

3. looks interesting Martin but I don't have the time to read it. Could you, like, summarize it?

Martin Ryan said...

Sorry for the delay Kevin; I was taking some leisure over the last couple of days :-)

This quote sets the context of the question:

"if history is a guide, every generation has a tendency to slander its progeny with allegations of decadence and sloth."

The findings are as follows:

"We find steep declines in the average weekly study time of full-time college students at four-year colleges over this period, from about 24 hours per week in 1961 to about 14 hours per week in the 2000’s. Study time fell for students from all demographic subgroups, within every major, and at 4-year colleges of every type, degree structure and level of selectivity. We conclude that the change in college culture is real."

There is some suggestive evidence that students work harder in recessions (that I recently flagged). Babcock and Marks look at four time periods: 2003-2005, 1987-1989, 1981, and 1961.

61 and 81 are characterised by much higher study time, but scholars of U.S. economic history will also know that these years are characterised by recession. This graph provides confirmation:

Babcock and Marks conclude that:

"postsecondary institutions in the United States are falling short of their traditional standard for academic time investment, and that the gap between actual effort elicited and the requirements or expectations articulated by these institutions has grown over time."

While the recession-theory cannot be proven, it be a useful addition to how we understand these findings. Babcock has several papers in related areas that I plan to investigate:

Liam Delaney said...

Martin - you fell for it.


Kevin, dont be winding up Martin.

Martin Ryan said...

It was an ironic response from me :-)

Was a good opportunity to discuss a very interesting paper...

Kevin Denny said...

Sorry Mar, old habits die hard