Not Too Late: Improving Academic Outcomes among Adolescents

Jonathan Guryan, Jens Ludwig, Monica P. Bhatt, Philip J. Cook, Jonathan M.V. Davis, Kenneth Dodge, George Farkas, Roland G. Fryer, Susan Mayer, Harold Pollack, Laurence Steinberg, Greg Stoddard*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Improving academic outcomes for economically disadvantaged students has proven challenging, particularly for children at older ages. We present two large-scale randomized controlled trials of a high-dosage tutoring program delivered to secondary school students in Chicago. One innovation is to use paraprofessional tutors to hold down cost, thereby increasing scalability. Participating in math tutoring increases math test scores by 0.18 to 0.40 standard deviations and increases math and nonmath course grades. These effects persist into future years. The data are consistent with increased personalization of instruction as a mechanism. The benefit- cost ratio is comparable to many successful early childhood programs.(JEL H75, I21, I24, I26, I32, J13, J15).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)738-765
Number of pages28
JournalAmerican Economic Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics


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