The Long-Lasting Effects of Citizenship Education Subjects: A Quasi-Experimental Approach

With Carol Galais

Both policy-makers and scholars disagree about the relevance and suitability of Citizenship Education (CE) standalone subjects. Extant evidence about its effects is mixed and inconclusive. In this paper we exploit the discontinuities generated by changes in Spanish education policies to identify the long-term effects of a CE standalone compulsory subject on a set of “civic” attitudes explicitly set as policy goals (political interest, trust, efficacy, knowledge, etc.). In 2007, a new CE subject was introduced in the Spanish school curricula, later being progressively removed in 2017. These changes gave rise to exogenous variation in exposure to civic education between young individuals born in different years. We exploit these discontinuities through multiple RDDs that draw on a combination of a 10-wave panel survey (2010-2018) and cross-sectional surveys that oversample young citizens. Our results suggest the emergence of a generation of critical -yet passive- citizens as a result of the implementation of the CE subject.

%d bloggers like this: