Does participation in 4-h improve schooling outcomes? evidence from Florida

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4 Scopus citations


We examine the effect that participation in 4-H, the largest youth development program in the United States, has on standardized test scores. We do this by utilizing grade-level longitudinal data on Florida's school districts from the Florida Department of Education, combined with 4-H participation statistics from the Florida 4-H. Specifically, we analyze the effect of the extent of 4-H participation for third-through tenth grade on the mathematics and reading subtests of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT). We use a difference-in-difference-in-differences approach to control for potential confounders of the causal relationship at the level of school districts, grades, and years. Our results indicate that the extent of 4-H participation at the district-grade-year level is positively and significantly related to several measures of performance on the FCAT test. Furthermore, we find suggestive evidence that these positive effects of 4-H participation accumulate over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)414-434
Number of pages21
JournalAmerican Journal of Agricultural Economics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • 4-H program
  • Florida
  • standardized test scores

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics


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