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Research Seminar in Economics University of Crete

June 27, 2024: Daphne Nicolitsas (University of Crete)

Should those who do not wish to study enter higher education?


The number of students entering higher education has been increasing for a very long time in Greece. An extension in demand for higher education was met with an increased supply of student places. As a result, the threshold for university entry did not increase. High-school students graduating in June 2021, however, faced for the first time a threshold to entering University. This has prompted a public discussion on whether admissions to and progression within universities on academic grounds should be stricter. The main point argued here is that entering University despite previous low academic performance does not typically bode well with meeting university academic standards, and thus, students take a very long time to graduate if they do. In this paper, we first document the extent to which degree completion takes much longer than the minimum required and report on the number of times students resit exams. Second, we investigate whether a policy, announced in 2007 and explicitly abolished in 2010, setting an upper limit to the number of times students can retake exams to prevent students from staying on at universities, had an impact on resits despite the fact that the policy was not enforced. Third, we estimate the sensitivity of the degree. That is, we estimate the percentage of false negatives under the assumption that if a student takes a test on one of the compulsory courses five times or more, then the student should not graduate. Finally, we estimate the extent to which students' poor academic performance could have been foreseen based on their diligence during their university studies, their grades in high school and their preferences for the study subject.

Time and Location: 12.15–1.30 p.m. On-site: 202 Sitzungsraum / Kaminzimmer Boltzmannstr. 16-20 14195 Berlin-Dahlem