Grades, Course Evaluations, and Academic Incentives
AbstractWe develop a model that identifies a range of new and somewhat counterintuitive results about how the incentives created by academic institutions affect student and faculty behavior. The model provides a theoretical basis for grade inflation and the behavioral response of students. Comparative statics are used to analyze the effects of institutional expectations placed on faculty. The results show that placing more emphasis on course evaluations exacerbates the problems of grade inflation and can even decrease a professor's teaching effort. Increased emphasis on research productivity also decreases teaching effort and provides a further incentive to inflate grades. We use the model to analyze how grade targets can control grade inflation and align professorial incentives with institutional objectives. We also discuss the implications of the model for hiring, promotion, and tenure.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Palgrave Macmillan in its journal Eastern Economic Journal.
Volume (Year): 36 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (Spring)
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Postal: Palgrave Macmillan Journals, Subscription Department, Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire RG21 6XS, UK
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- Thomas K. Bauer & Barbara S. Grave, 2011.
"Performance-related Funding of Universities – Does more Competition Lead to Grade Inflation?,"
Ruhr Economic Papers
0288, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
- Bauer, Thomas K. & Grave, Barbara S., 2011. "Performance-related Funding of Universities: Does More Competition Lead to Grade Inflation?," IZA Discussion Papers 6073, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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