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Akin to my teacher: Does caste, religious or gender distance between student and teacher matter? Some evidence from India

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Author Info

  • Shenila Rawal

    ()
    (Institute of Education, University of London, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1H 0AL.)

  • Geeta Kingdon

    ()
    (Institute of Education, University of London, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1H 0AL.)

Abstract

This paper uses a unique data set from 5028 primary school children in rural India to examine whether the demographic interactions between students and teachers influence student outcomes and whether social distance between student and teacher exacerbates gender, caste and religious gaps in children's achievement. One would expect this to be the case if discrimination and/or role model effects persist in the classroom. School and individual fixed effects methodology are used. In the pupil fixed effects model, across subject variation is used to test whether having a teacher whose gender, caste and religion are the same as that of the student improves student test scores. We find statistically significant positive effects of matching student and teacher characteristics. We find that a student's achievement in a subject in which the teacher shares the same gender, caste and religion as the child is, on average, nearly a quarter of a SD higher than the same child's achievement in a subject taught by a teacher who does not share the child's gender, caste or religion. Policy implications are considered.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Quantitative Social Science - Institute of Education, University of London in its series DoQSS Working Papers with number 10-18.

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Date of creation: 21 Oct 2010
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Handle: RePEc:qss:dqsswp:1018

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Keywords: education; religion; gender;

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  1. Jean Drèze & Mamta Murthi, 2001. "Fertility, Education, and Development: Evidence from India," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 27(1), pages 33-63.
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  1. Teachers and matches
    by chris dillow in Stumbling and Mumbling on 2010-11-03 15:49:15
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Cited by:
  1. Karthik Muralidharan & Ketki Sheth, 2013. "Bridging Education Gender Gaps in Developing Countries: The Role of Female Teachers," NBER Working Papers 19341, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Fagernäs, Sonja & Pelkonen, Panu, 2012. "Preferences and Skills of Indian Public Sector Teachers," IZA Discussion Papers 6563, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Sonja Fagernäs & Panu Pelkonen, 2011. "Whether to Hire Local Contract Teachers? Trade-off Between Skills and Preferences in India," Working Paper Series 1811, Department of Economics, University of Sussex.

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