Economic Education


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This was presented by Prof. Claudia Parliament at the 47th annual conference of the Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa.

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  • According to MDE: 65% of all high school students who graduated in in 2004 attended a postsecondary institution inside or outside the state the following fall The 3-year graduation rate at the state’s two-year colleges was 36% in 2004 At Minnesota’s four-year colleges and universities, the four-year graduation rate in 2004 stood at 36 percent Graduation rate for students who took six years to complete an undergraduate program was 57% U of M: In 2006, the four-year graduation rate for the Twin Cities campus was 40.7 percent, the five-year graduation rate 57.9 percent and the six-year graduation rate was 60.8 percent. The most significant increase was in the four-year rate, which increased more than 8 percent - from 32.6 percent in 2004 to 40.7 percent in 2006. The university announced ambitious new graduation rate goals for all campuses of the university in October 2006. For the Twin Cities campus, the goal is a four-year graduation rate of 60 percent, five-year rate of 75 percent and a six-year rate of 80 percent.
  • Economic Education

    1. 1. Economic Education: Path to a Vibrant Future
    2. 2. Outline <ul><li>Rationale for pre-university education and economic education </li></ul><ul><li>Review of economic education research </li></ul><ul><li>U.S. economists and economic education </li></ul><ul><li>Educational reform in South Africa </li></ul><ul><li>Education issues in South Africa and Minnesota </li></ul><ul><li>Your potential involvement </li></ul>
    3. 3. Rationale <ul><li>Why is pre-university education essential? </li></ul><ul><li>Primary and secondary school gross enrollment rates have a significant, positive impact on economic growth. (Barro, 1991) </li></ul><ul><li>Education is tied to adoption of new technology, is shown to make physical capital more productive, and leads to capital accumulation. (Benhabis and Spiegel,1994) </li></ul>
    4. 4. Education Matters to Individuals
    5. 5. Rationale <ul><li>Why is pre-university education essential? </li></ul><ul><li>What is economic literacy? </li></ul>
    6. 6. Economic Literacy U.S. National Assessment of Educational Progress in Economics, 2006 <ul><li>Identified how commercial banks use money deposited in checking accounts (52%) </li></ul><ul><li>Used marginal analysis to determine how a business could maximize profits (36%) </li></ul><ul><li>Analyzed how unemployment impacts income, spending and production (11%) </li></ul>
    7. 7. Rationale <ul><li>Why is pre-university education essential? </li></ul><ul><li>What is economic literacy? </li></ul><ul><li>Why is economic literacy important? </li></ul>
    8. 8. Importance of Economic Literacy <ul><li>Economic literacy is a foundation for democracy and market economies. </li></ul>
    9. 9. Education Research <ul><li>Literature is often based on production function analysis. </li></ul><ul><li>Output is student performance. </li></ul>
    10. 10. Production Inputs <ul><li>Human capital of instructors (degrees, experience, coursework) </li></ul><ul><li>School capital (school size, class size, equipment, materials) </li></ul><ul><li>Labor (time in class) </li></ul><ul><li>Technology (teaching methods) </li></ul>
    11. 11. Education Research <ul><li>Teacher education is the most consistently positive and significant input. </li></ul>
    12. 12. Economic Education Research in Minnesota <ul><li>Objective was to identify factors that affect student performance in economics. </li></ul>
    13. 13. Data <ul><li>1,244 high school students </li></ul><ul><li>Pre- and post-test scores, gender, race/ethnicity </li></ul><ul><li>28 Teachers </li></ul><ul><li>Pre- and post-test scores, gender, teaching experience, degrees, number of college-level economics </li></ul><ul><li>22 schools </li></ul><ul><li>Size, % of learners on free and reduced lunch, % of special education learners </li></ul>
    14. 14. Findings <ul><li>Increase in teacher knowledge significantly and positively affects student performance. </li></ul><ul><li>Number of economics courses and completion of a Masters degree impacts student performance </li></ul><ul><li>Student and teacher gender do not affect performance. </li></ul><ul><li>Race, ethnicity has an impact. </li></ul>
    15. 15. U.S. Economists and Pre-University Economic Education <ul><li>Council on Economic Education is an affiliated network of state council and 200 university-based centers for economic education. </li></ul>
    16. 16. Council network timeline <ul><li>1960’s – identifying basic concepts for K-12 </li></ul><ul><li> developing standardized tests </li></ul><ul><li>1970’s – development of materials for teacher professional development </li></ul><ul><li>1990’s – development of voluntary standards </li></ul><ul><li>2000’s – development of national standards and assessments </li></ul>
    17. 17. South Africa Educational Reform <ul><li>One National Department of Education </li></ul><ul><li>New national curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>Outcome based education </li></ul><ul><li>Economics required in R-9 grade level </li></ul><ul><li>Economics is included in national assessment at grade 9 </li></ul><ul><li>Economics is secondary level elective </li></ul>
    18. 18. Pre-University Education Challenges in SA and MN <ul><li>Challenges to prepare, admit, and retain students previously under represented. </li></ul>
    19. 19. A closer look at Minnesota
    20. 20. Minnesota’s Future Source: State Demographer using MN Dept. of Education data, August 2008
    21. 21. Minnesota has a Readiness Gap <ul><li>% in MN Scoring Ready or Above on ACT </li></ul>Source: Minnesota Office of Higher Education, Measuring Up 2008
    22. 22. Development Bank of South Africa, Roadmap for Education <ul><li>93% of math passes in South Africa come from 21% of the schools, mainly white schools. </li></ul>
    23. 23. Economic Education South Africa and Minnesota <ul><li>Economics is now required at the pre-university level, </li></ul><ul><li>however, </li></ul><ul><li>teachers are generally not prepared to teach economics. </li></ul><ul><li>Critical need to strengthen professional development programs for teachers of economics. </li></ul>
    24. 24. How to Become Engaged in Pre-University Economic Education <ul><li>Association promotes economics education </li></ul><ul><li>Universities collaborate with schools </li></ul>
    25. 25. University of Minnesota College Readiness Consortium <ul><li>Helping learners master the </li></ul><ul><li>knowledge, </li></ul><ul><li>skills, and </li></ul><ul><li>habits </li></ul><ul><li>for success in higher education. </li></ul>
    26. 26. University of Minnesota College Readiness Consortium <ul><li>Enhance K-12 education systems </li></ul><ul><li>Close the achievement gap for under represented groups </li></ul><ul><li>Improving the coherence, relevance and visibility of university K-12 activities </li></ul>
    27. 27. How to Become Engaged in Pre-University Economic Education <ul><li>Your involvement: </li></ul><ul><li>Provide professional development programs to teachers </li></ul><ul><li>Find a balance among research, teaching, and community involement </li></ul>
    28. 28. <ul><li>“ If we are to successfully navigate future challenges, we must work diligently to maintain the quality of our educational system where it is strong and strive to improve it where it is not. </li></ul><ul><li>We must find ways to move more of our students, especially minorities and students from disadvantaged backgrounds, into educational opportunities after high school. &quot; </li></ul><ul><li>-Ben Bernanke, Chair, Federal Reserve System </li></ul>
    29. 29. South African Foundation for Economic and Finance Education (SAFEFE) <ul><li>Vision: For South Africa to have citizens who are empowered to successfully participate in a transforming society and thus ensure the well being of the country. </li></ul><ul><li>Mission : To develop the economic literacy of today’s learners by providing comprehensive, continuing professional developing opportunities for teachers. </li></ul>
    30. 30. <ul><li>“ It is our responsibility as lawmakers and educators to make the educational system work... </li></ul><ul><li>Every American will need to get more than a high school diploma. And dropping out of high school is no longer an option. </li></ul><ul><li>It’s not just quitting on yourself, it’s quitting on your country – and this country needs and values the talents of every American. </li></ul><ul><li>That is why we will provide the support necessary for you to complete college and meet a new goal: by 2020, America will once again have the highest proportion of college graduates in the world.” </li></ul><ul><li>-- President Obama, Address to Congress, February 24, 2009 </li></ul>
    31. 31. Higher Education Readiness: A “Man on the Moon” goal that can be accomplished
    32. 32. <ul><li>Thank you for your time and attention. </li></ul>