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Individual Teacher Incentives, Student Achievement and Grade Inflation

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  • Martins, Pedro S.

    ()
    (Queen Mary, University of London)

Abstract

How do teacher incentives affect student achievement? We contribute to this question by examining the effects of the recent introduction of teacher performance-related pay and tournaments in Portugal's public schools. Specifically, we draw on matched student-school panel data covering the population of secondary school national exams over seven years. We then conduct a difference-in-differences analysis based on two complementary control groups: public schools in two autonomous regions that were exposed to lighter versions of the reform than in the rest of the country; and private schools, which are also subject to the same national exams but whose teachers were not affected by the reform. Our results consistently indicate that the increased focus on individual teacher performance caused a significant decline in student achievement, particularly in terms of national exams. The triple-difference results also document a significant increase in grade inflation.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4051.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4051

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Keywords: performance-related pay; public sector; matched school-student data;

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References

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  1. Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., 1998. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition and Cooperation," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 1812, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Atkinson, Adele & Burgess, Simon & Croxson, Bronwyn & Gregg, Paul & Propper, Carol & Slater, Helen & Wilson, Deborah, 2009. "Evaluating the impact of performance-related pay for teachers in England," Labour Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 251-261, June.
  3. Barlevy, Gadi & Neal, Derek, 2009. "Pay for Percentile," IZA Discussion Papers 4383, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Marianne Bertrand & Esther Duflo & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2004. "How Much Should We Trust Differences-in-Differences Estimates?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 119(1), pages 249-275, February.
  5. Oriana Bandiera & Iwan Barankay & Imran Rasul, 2005. "Social Preferences and the Response to Incentives: Evidence from Personnel Data," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 120(3), pages 917-962, August.
  6. Daniel Aaronson & Lisa Barrow & William Sander, 2002. "Teachers and student achievement in the Chicago public high schools," Working Paper Series, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago WP-02-28, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  7. Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, 2004. "Fairness and Incentives in a Multi-task Principal-Agent Model," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 106(3), pages 453-474, October.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. What explains the Portuguese PISA results?
    by Pedro S. Martins in The Portuguese Economy on 2011-01-05 15:30:00
Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
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Cited by:
  1. Thomas K. Bauer & Barbara S. Grave, 2011. "Performance-related Funding of Universities – Does more Competition Lead to Grade Inflation?," Ruhr Economic Papers, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen 0288, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  2. Claudia Burgard & Barbara S. Grave, 2013. "Does it Pay Off to Incentivize Universities? – Performance Funding in the German Higher Education System Abstract: This paper analyzes the effect of the introduction of performance-related funding i," Ruhr Economic Papers, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen 0457, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  3. Ehlers, Tim & Schwager, Robert, 2012. "Honest Grading, Grade Inflation and Reputation," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62051, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  4. Lockheed, Marlaine E., 2014. "Teacher opinions on performance incentives : evidence from the Kyrgyz Republic," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6752, The World Bank.
  5. repec:got:cegedp:143 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Ehlers, Tim & Schwager, Robert, 2012. "Honest grading, grade inflation and reputation," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 143, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.

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