college-entrance test


This paper provides a long-term follow-up of students who participated in the Tennessee STAR experiment. The Tennessee STAR experiment randomly assigned l 1,600 elementary school
students and their teachers to a small class, regular-size class or regular-size class with a teacher-
aide. The experiment began with the wave of students who entered kindergarten in 1985, and
lasted for four years. After third grade, all students returned to regular-size classes. We analyze
the effect of past attendance in a small class on standardized test scores through the eighth grade,
on whether students took the ACT or SAT college entrance exam, and on how they performed on
the ACT or SAT exam. The results suggest that attending a small class in the early grades is
associated with somewhat higher performance on standardized tests, and an increase in the
likelihood that students take a college-entrance exam, especially among minority students. Most
significantly, being assigned to a small class appears to have narrowed the black-white gap in
college-test taking by 54 percent.

Year of Publication
Date Published
Publication Language
Citation Key
Economic Journal, 111, (468) January 2001
Whitmore, D., & Krueger, A. (1999). The Effect of Attending a Small Class in the Early Grades on College-Test Taking and Middle School Test Results: Evidence from Project STAR. Retrieved from (Original work published October 1999)
Working Papers