Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/110080
Authors: 
Schurer, Stefanie
Kassenböhmer, Sonja C.
Leung, Felix
Year of Publication: 
2015
Series/Report no.: 
IZA Discussion Papers 8873
Abstract: 
We investigate whether universities select by, or also shape, their students' personality, as implied by the human capital investment model. Using a nationally representative sample of Australian adolescents followed over eight years, we find that youth conscientiousness, internal locus of control, and low extraversion strongly predict the probability of obtaining a university degree. However, university education does not shape those personality traits associated with a strong work ethic and intellect. Yet, it offsets a general decline in extraversion as individuals age and boosts the development of agreeableness for men from disadvantaged backgrounds. Our findings contribute to the discussion whether universities should teach their students broader skills.
Subjects: 
university education
Big-Five personality traits
psychic cost
inequality
change in personality
JEL: 
I12
J24
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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