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ERIC Number: EJ1078680
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Nov
Pages: 26
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0361-0365
Effectiveness of Vocational High Schools in Students' Access to and Persistence in Postsecondary Vocational Education
Farías, Mauricio; Sevilla, María Paola
Research in Higher Education, v56 n7 p693-718 Nov 2015
Vocational education is increasingly seen as a viable path to higher education and not simply a direct route to the labor market. This paper studies the relationship between the secondary school track attended by Chilean students (vocational or academic) and their subsequent outcomes in access to and persistence in postsecondary vocational programs. Although it is expected that vocational students will display lower access to higher education programs, due to their less intense curriculum and the generally non-academic environment of their schools, their performance in post-secondary vocational programs is unclear. Field-specific knowledge and vocational maturity could improve the performance of students from secondary vocational education backgrounds. Our analysis uses propensity score matching to reduce selection bias and determine causal relationships. It also utilizes sensitivity analysis to check for the robustness of results. The findings reveal that, indeed, vocational students have lower rates of access and persistence than academic ones. Students who change fields between secondary and postsecondary education have the lowest persistence levels. We also found that vocational students have lower probabilities of access to higher education funding, and higher probabilities of enrolling in evening classes. Thus, when controlling for these two characteristics, we found that students who continue in the same vocational field between secondary and postsecondary levels had a better performance than students with an academic background. These findings may suggest that vocational students require greater support in order to increase their probabilities of success in higher education.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Chile
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A