K-12 Skills Development and PSE Enrollment Decisions

EPRI had led numerous projects examining how students prepare for postsecondary education and the relationship of various background factors and access to postsecondary education.

Background Characteristics and Patterns of Access to Postsecondary Education in Ontario: Evidence from Longitudinal Tax Data

This project uses Statistics Canada’s tax-based Longitudinal Administrative Databank (LAD) to explore Ontario’s overall postsecondary education (PSE) participation rates from 1999 through 2008 and how access is related to individual and family characteristics including gender, family income, regional population and family type.

Documents:
Background Characteristics and Patterns of Access to Postsecondary Education in Ontario: Evidence from Longitudinal Tax Data
Ross Finnie and Dejan Pavlic, 2013
Toronto: Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario

Access to Post-secondary Education: How Ontario Compares

This project used the Youth in Transition Survey (YITS-A) data to compare participation in PSE between Ontario and other Canadian regions, tracking the educational pathways of a sample of Canadians born in 1984 from the period of 1999 (when they were 15 and in high school) to 2006 (when they were 22 years old). In comparison to previous studies, this project explored not only the critical family income and parental education factors, but also the role of high school grades and reading scores from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) evaluation. While grades and test scores are strongly related to PSE participation throughout Canada (university in particular), family income matters less in Ontario than in other jurisdictions and grade and PISA score effects are among the strongest, indicating that Ontario may have a particularly ‘meritocratic’ system of access to PSE.

Documents:
Access to Post-secondary Education: How Ontario Compares
Ross Finnie and Dejan Pavlic, 2011
Toronto: Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario

Under-represented Groups in Postsecondary Education in Ontario: Evidence from the Youth in Transition Survey

This project used data from the Youth in Transition Survey and built on previous research to analyze access to post-secondary education among a number of under-represented groups in Ontario and in other regions of Canada. This project differed from previous work in the full range of groups it considered (low family income, lower parental education, family type, disability status, etc.). As a result, the project gives a more precise indication of which factors matter most to PSE access among under-represented groups – and which factors appear to matter simply because they are correlated with the other factors that really matter.

Documents:
Under-represented Groups in Postsecondary Education in Ontario: Evidence from the Youth in Transition Survey
Ross Finnie, Stephen Childs, and Andrew Wismer, 2011
Toronto: Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario