The evolution of the gender test score gap through seventh grade

New insights from Australia using quantile regression and decomposition
AuthorsHa Nguyen
PublishedNovember 2015
PublisherBankwest Curtin Economics Centre Working Paper Series
Number of Pages38

This paper documents the patterns and examines the factors contributing to a gender test score gap in five test subjects in early seventh grade of schooling using a recent and nationally representative panel of Australian children. Regression results indicate that females excel at writing and grammar at later grades whereas males outperform females in numeracy in all grades, whether at the mean or along the distribution of the test score. Our results also reveal a widening gender test score gap in writing and numeracy as the students advance their schooling. Regression and decomposition results also highlight the importance of controlling for pre-school cognitive skills in examining the gender test score gap.