Gender gaps in low and high-stakes assessments

Produced by: 
University of Sao Paulo
Available from: 
May 2022
Paper author(s): 
Fabiana Rocha
Paula Pereda
Maria Dolores Montoya Diaz
Gabriel Facundes Monteiro
Luiza Karpavicius
Liz Matsunaga
Bruna Borges
Clara Brenck
Topic: 
Gender Economics
Year: 
2022

A comprehensive body of literature suggests that women do not perform as well as men in competitive settings. In this paper, we use individual-level administrative data to investigate if women and men respond differently to exam stakes in Brazil. We compare performances of students at the University of São Paulo in undergraduate Economics courses (low stakes) and in the national admission exam to Economics graduate programs (high stakes). We find evidence that women outperform men in undergraduate disciplines but underperform on the graduate admission exam. Our study indicates that there are indeed gender differences in low and high-stakes evaluations.

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