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The Effectiveness of Inputs in Primary Education: Insights from Recent Student Surveys for Sub-Saharan Africa

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  • Sebastian Fehrler
  • Katharina Michaelowa
  • Annika Wechtler

Abstract

With SACMEQ and PASEC there are now two large data bases available on student achievement, socio-economic background and school and teacher characteristics in both anglophone and francophone sub-Saharan Africa. A joint analysis of PASEC and SACMEQ in a common education production function framework allows us to estimate the impact of educational inputs on student achievement in 21 sub-Saharan African countries and to compare our results with those of earlier empirical studies for education systems in Africa and other world regions. In our analysis we focus on school equipment, teacher quality and class organisation. The issue of teacher and student incentives cannot be adequately addressed with the given data. Our results are based on a traditional retrospective analysis of student achievement in PASEC and SACMEQ countries. In contrast to the 'nothing works' result from most industrialized countries' studies we find robust positive correlations of achievement test scores and the possession of textbooks and negative correlations with teaching in shifts. The most striking result is the weak or even absent correlation of achievement test scores and teacher education and professional training. However, some differences between francophone and anglophone education systems can be observed in this context if differences in the sampling methodology are duly taken into account.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Journal of Development Studies.

Volume (Year): 45 (2009)
Issue (Month): 9 ()
Pages: 1545-1578

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Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:45:y:2009:i:9:p:1545-1578

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Cited by:
  1. Peter Boone & Ila Fazzio & Kameshwari Jandhyala & Chitra Jayanty & Gangadhar Jayanty & Simon Johnson & Vimala Ramachandrin & Filipa Silva & Zhaoguo Zhan, 2013. "The surprisingly dire situation of children's education in rural west Africa: results from the CREO study in Guinea-Bissau," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 51535, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  2. Christopher F. Hein & Rebecca Allen, 2013. "Teacher Quality in Sub-Saharan Africa: Pupil-fixed effects estimates for twelve countries," DoQSS Working Papers 13-08, Department of Quantitative Social Science - Institute of Education, University of London.
  3. Maria Kuecken & Marie-Anne Valfort, 2013. "When do textbooks matter for achievement? Evidence from African primary schools," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00828418, HAL.
  4. Kuecken, Maria & Valfort, Marie-Anne, 2013. "When do textbooks matter for achievement? Evidence from African primary schools," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 119(3), pages 311-315.
  5. López-Torres, Laura & Prior, Diego , 2013. "Do Parents Perceive The Technical Quality Of Public Schools? An Activity Analysis Approach," Regional and Sectoral Economic Studies, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 13(3), pages 39-60.
  6. Andy Dickerson & Steven McIntosh & Christine Valente, . "Do The Maths: An Analysis Of The Gender Gap In Mathematics In AfricaAbstract: This paper uses microdata for 19 African countries to examine the gender difference in maths test scores amongst primary s," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 13/300, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  7. Peter Boone & Ila Fazzio & Kameshwari Jandhyala & Chitra Jayanty & Gangadhar Jayanty & Simon Johnson & Vimala Ramachandrin & Filipa Silva & Zhaoguo Zhan, 2014. "The Surprisingly Dire Situation of Children's Education in Rural West Africa," NBER Chapters, in: African Successes: Human Capital National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Jones, Sam, 2013. "Class size versus class composition: What matters for learning in East Africa?," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  9. Peter Boone & Ila Fazzio & Kameshwari Jandhyala & Chitra Jayanty & Gangadhar Jayanty & Simon Johnson & Vimala Ramachandrin & Filipa Silva & Zhaoguo Zhan, 2013. "The Surprisingly Dire Situation of Children's Education in Rural West Africa: Results from the CREO Study in Guinea-Bissau," CEP Discussion Papers dp1201, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  10. Dickerson, Andy & McIntosh, Steven & Valente, Christine, 2013. "Do the Maths: An Analysis of the Gender Gap in Mathematics in Africa," IZA Discussion Papers 7174, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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