CNLSYChildren of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth
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There are three leading explanations: 1) the sample of children included in the data set used by Phillips, the Children of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (CNLSY), especially in the early years, may be nonrepresentative; 2) better information on students' background characteristics is available in the Early Childhood survey; and 3) blacks born into recent cohorts have made real gains relative to blacks born a decade earlier.
By limiting the CNLSY data to cohorts born in the same years as the children in our data set, we found raw test-score gaps only half as large as those found in the earlier cohorts of data used by Phillips and remarkably close to those found in our data set.
After introducing the same set of controls we used in the analysis above, the estimated black-white achievement gaps in recent cohorts of the CNLSY were about 0.5 standard deviations in math and 0.4 in vocabulary.