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Institutional Ethos, Peers and Individual Outcomes

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In this paper we present estimates of roommate and institution based peer effects. Using data from the College & Beyond survey, the Freshman survey, and phonebook data that allows us to identify college roommates – we estimate models of students? political persuasion and intellectual engagement. The evidence suggests that a student?s roommate?s political sentiments have some impact on their own political views later in life. We also implement a cluster based analysis that attempts to answer the question: how would a student?s outcomes have changed if they?d attended a very different school? Our findings suggest that student outcomes are, indeed, sensitive to the school they attend. Similar students attending schools that have a decidedly different ?ethos? differ in important ways post-college. Institutional peer effects seem to have a powerful effect on student outcomes.

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David J. Zimmerman, David Rosenblum, Preston Hillman

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Adapt according to the presented license agreement and reference the original author.