Get good grades, attend a well-regarded school, land a fruitful job—this trajectory is a fundamental tenet of the American dream. Schooling often determines future earning potential and economic mobility. Yet educational choices are often fraught with confusion and uncertainty for students and parents, and for the policy makers who must make difficult decisions about controversial policies and scarce education resources. Are charter schools always a beneficial choice? Do vouchers provide more opportunity? What about expensive scholarships—do they really boost outcomes for students in need?
MIT’s School Effectiveness & Inequality Initiative (SEII), based within the Department of Economics, uses rigorous experimental and quasi-experimental methods to examine how education and economics are linked. SEII is helmed by faculty co-directors Joshua Angrist, David Autor, and Parag Pathak and is backed by more than 25 affiliated faculty, postdocs, and graduate students.