Enrolling girls without learning: Evidence from public schools in Afghanistan

Asadullah, M. Niaz and Alim, Md. Abdul and Hossain, M. Anowar (2019) Enrolling girls without learning: Evidence from public schools in Afghanistan. Development Policy Review, 37 (4). pp. 486-503. ISSN 0950-6764, DOI https://doi.org/10.1111/dpr.12354.

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/dpr.12354


While more girls are now attending school in Afghanistan than prior to 2010, there is a lack of evidence on how school attendance is helping their cognitive development. We use data from a large sample of all-girls state-funded school students to estimate for the first time the “learning profile” for Afghanistan. Students enrolled in grades 4 to 9 were assessed using the Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) and the Early Grade Mathematics Assessment (EGMA) test items. We find that higher grade progression (particularly in grades 6–9) leads to almost no gain in numeracy (addition and subtraction) skills that should have been achieved in early grades. Similar results follow from the analysis of student performance in the EGRA test, particularly in oral reading fluency (correct words read per minute) and oral reading comprehension (number of correct answers out of 12). These findings warn that simply enrolling girls in school without improving the relationship between grade completion and learning is unlikely to transform the lives of women in Afghanistan. © The Authors 2017. Development Policy Review © 2017 Overseas Development Institute

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Afghanistan; cognitive ability; gender inequality; school quality
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Economics & Administration
Depositing User: Ms. Juhaida Abd Rahim
Date Deposited: 19 Feb 2020 01:40
Last Modified: 19 Feb 2020 01:40
URI: http://eprints.um.edu.my/id/eprint/23835

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