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ICT use at home for school-related tasks: what is the effect on a student’s achievement? Empirical evidence from OECD PISA data

Agasisti, Tommaso and Gil-Izquierdo, María and Han, Seong Won (2017): ICT use at home for school-related tasks: what is the effect on a student’s achievement? Empirical evidence from OECD PISA data.

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Abstract

In this paper, we have employed data from the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA, 2012 edition) on the EU-15 countries in order to investigate the relationship between (i) the way in which students use ICT at home for school-related purposes and (ii) their test scores in reading, mathematics and science. By employing two different econometric techniques – namely, propensity score matching and instrumental variables – we can provide evidence that in most countries there is an association between using computers intensely for homework and achieving lower test scores across all subjects. No clear pattern emerges for differences between students with higher socio-economic status (SES) and their low-SES counterparts, although some models suggest that the negative effect of using ICT at home is slightly greater for high-SES students. These findings suggest that a more cautious approach should be taken with regards to the wide-spread use of digital innovation as a means to support students’ out-of-school work. Such an indication can potentially suggest that teachers should be trained to integrate this practice effectively into their strategies for assigning homework.

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