Education Research in the Center for Latin American Social Policy

Teaching Hispanic children

Education is critical to national and local development. Failure to improve the quality of and access to educational systems in Latin America can hinder the region’s future. Towards this end, CLASP researchers have:

  • analyzed ways in which education may promote development by assessing the state of education in Latin American countries as well as the policies that might bring about positive change;
  • undertaken evaluations of school-based management initiatives in the region, and have evaluated the impact of a large-scale teacher incentive program in Mexico. (Here, they found that the program had little impact, which resulted in major reform proposals);
  • investigated the economic effects of increasing access to higher education through loans targeted at talented low-income students in Colombia;
  • focused on the connection between public spending on education and productivity in the labor market;
  • examined the effectiveness of different policies that seek to attract the young into higher education;
  • studied non-traditional ways in which education can bring people out of poverty.

Moreover, because the early years are foundational for the development of cognitive and non-cognitive skills, CLASP researchers are looking into interventions to improve the cognitive development of very young Latin Americans.

Research Projects

  • Evaluating the Impact of Access to Private Comprehensive Schooling in Mexico

    One promising avenue for delivering high-quality services to poor populations in developing countries is through subsidized private schools. RAND is investigating the impact and cost-effectiveness of a privately provided, affordable comprehensive schooling model for poor families in Mexico City.

  • Examining the IB Diploma Program in Mexico

    Mexican students enroll in International Baccalaureate Diploma Programs to be more prepared for college, rather than to boost their college admissions options, according to RAND case studies.

  • Is a Dream Deferred a Dream Denied? Evidence from a Mexican College Lottery

    The standard model of educational decisions predicts no (or minimal) effects of deferral on educational attainment, but this model may not tell the whole story. A study of those who were not accepted by lottery to a Mexican college shows that labor market effects must also be considered.

  • Examining the Effect of Education on Time Preferences

    Does one's level of education influence one's patience? A study examining the time preferences of students accepted by lottery to a Mexican college, compared to those of individuals who were not accepted, indicates that more educated individuals do tend to be more patient.