Parental family size intentions and educational outcomes

Morag Henderson and Tak Wing Chan, University of Oxford

[Project number 30138]

The aim is to see whether children of families with mutiple births have different educational attainment. Sibling 1 in family A (who is one of two children from two pregnancies) will be compared to sibling 1 in family B (who is one of two children from one pregnancy). Further comparisons will be made with families of different sizes, for example families of three (1+1+1 compared to 2+1) etc. Two samples will be drawn from 1971 and 1981 census data respectively; each will be matched with education records from 2001.

This research will comprise a chapter for my Doctoral thesis from the University of Oxford, which I am due to submit in October 2012. The overall aim of the thesis is to consider in what ways families contribute to inequalities in terms of educational attainment. This work will help to identify whether parents make an active choice about family size in order to confer an educational advantage for the children.