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Working paper

Friendship And Study Assistance Ties Of University Students

We analyze the characteristics of the social networks of students studying in the economics department in one Russian university. We focus on student friendship and study assistance ties and demonstrate how these networks are connected with the individual characteristics of students and their peers. We find that the probability of a tie existing is explained by the gender homophily, and initial student assignment to the same exogenously defined study group. Students ask for help and form friendships with students who have similar academic achievements. Academically successful students are more popular in study assistance networks while there is no gender difference in student popularity in both networks. Our findings enhance the understanding of the role of friendship and study assistance ties in the formation of peer group effects