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Does Living Closer to a University Increase Educational Attainment? A Longitudinal Study of Aspirations, University Entry, and Elite University Enrolment of Australian Youth

Parker, PD; Jerrim, J; Anders, J; Astell-Burt, T; (2016) Does Living Closer to a University Increase Educational Attainment? A Longitudinal Study of Aspirations, University Entry, and Elite University Enrolment of Australian Youth. Journal of Youth and Adolescence , 45 (6) pp. 1156-1175. 10.1007/s10964-015-0386-x. Green open access

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Abstract

Geography remains a critical factor that shapes the development of aspirations, attainment, and choice in young people. We focus on the role of geography on university entry and aspirations due to the increasing requirement in society for a higher education qualification for access to prestigious positions in society. Using a large representative longitudinal database (N = 11,999; 50 % male; 27 % provincial or rural; 2 % Indigenous) of Australia youth we explore the association between distance to a university campus and the critical attainment outcomes of university entry and enrolment in an elite university as well as critical predictors of these outcomes in access to information resources (i.e., university outreach programs) and university aspirations. In doing so, we provide new insight into distance effects, and the extent that these are due to selection, cost, and community influence. Our findings suggest that distance is significantly associated with both university expectations and entrance, with an especially large impact upon young people from low socioeconomic backgrounds. However, we also find little evidence that distance is related to attending a university led information session. Our conclusion is that distance effects cannot be fully explained by selection in terms of academic achievement and socioeconomic status, and that anticipatory decisions and costs are the most likely drivers of the distance effect.

Type: Article
Title: Does Living Closer to a University Increase Educational Attainment? A Longitudinal Study of Aspirations, University Entry, and Elite University Enrolment of Australian Youth
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s10964-015-0386-x
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10964-015-0386-x
Language: English
Additional information: The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10964-015-0386-x
Keywords: Distance effects, Institution choice, University aspirations, University entry
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Learning and Leadership
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Learning and Leadership > Centre for Education Policy and Equalising Opportunities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Social Research Institute
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1472903
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