Research in Higher Education

, Volume 50, Issue 1, pp 52–72 | Cite as

Impact of Increased Academic Intensity on Transfer Rates: An Application of Matching Estimators to Student-Unit Record Data

  • William R. Doyle


The impact of increased academic intensity on transfer rates from community colleges to 4-year institutions has been estimated only from observational data, with the possibility of selection bias. This study uses matching estimators to overcome possible selection bias and estimate the causal impact of increased academic intensity on transfer rates. Using student unit record data from Tennessee for the years 1995 through 2004, I find that taking 12 or more credit hours increases the probability of transfer from between 11% and 15%.


Community college Transfer Matching Policy 



The author gratefully acknowledges the staff at the Tennesse Higher Education Commission, who provided the data for this study. Linda Sax, John Chesslock, and Jennifer Delaney all provided detailed comments and suggestions that improved the paper. Last, the author would like to thank the editor and two anonymous reviewers for their thoughtful and constructive comments. The author bears sole responsibility for the content of this paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Peabody College of Vanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA

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