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Academic achievement and television viewing by eighth graders: a quantitative analysis

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A model is proposed and estimated that incorporates the production process of and demand for mathematics schooling for eight grades in the USA. In addition to traditional socio-economic variables, this model includes a television-viewing variable. On the production side, television viewing is the most dominant variable in explaining variations in the quality of mathematics schooling. This is followed in importance by expenditure per pupil and children under the poverty level. On the demand side, price is the most dominant variable, followed by television viewing, income, and the divorce rate. The demand and production are price inelastic. The results also suggest that the production (supply) curve is positively sloped. Therefore, given other factors, schools can improve the quality of mathematics schooling with additional expenditure per pupil. However, the actual outcome would depend upon the position of the production and demand curves. Schools can also improve the quality of mathematics education with better students' inputs such as less television viewing and reduction in poverty, provided that demand for quality education in mathematics also shifts upward.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 1996-08-01

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