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Grading Standards in Education Departments at Universities

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Abstract

This paper documents a startling difference in the grading standards between education departments and other academic departments at universities – undergraduate students in education classes receive significantly higher grades than students in all other classes. This phenomenon cannot be explained by differences in student quality or structural differences across departments (i.e., differences in class sizes). Drawing on evidence from the economics literature, the differences in grading standards between education and non-education departments imply that undergraduate education majors, the majority of whom become teachers, supply substantially less effort in college than non-education majors. If the grading standards in education departments were brought in line with those of other major academic departments, student effort would be expected to increase by at least 10-16 percent.

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File URL: http://economics.missouri.edu/working-papers/2010/WP1002_koedel.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Missouri in its series Working Papers with number 1002.

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Length: 27 pgs.
Date of creation: 01 Feb 2010
Date of revision: 13 Jun 2011
Handle: RePEc:umc:wpaper:1002

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Keywords: Grading Standards; Grade Inflation; Grading Standards in Departments of Education; Teacher Training;

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  1. Daniel Aaronson & Lisa Barrow & William Sander, 2002. "Teachers and student achievement in the Chicago public high schools," Working Paper Series WP-02-28, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  2. Arcidiacono, Peter, 2002. "Ability Sorting and the Returns to College Major," Working Papers 02-26, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  3. William Chan & Li Hao & Wing Suen, 2007. "A Signaling Theory Of Grade Inflation," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 48(3), pages 1065-1090, 08.
  4. Philip Babcock, 2010. "Real Costs Of Nominal Grade Inflation? New Evidence From Student Course Evaluations," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 48(4), pages 983-996, October.
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Cited by:
  1. Peter Arcidiacono & Cory Koedel, 2014. "Race and College Success: Evidence from Missouri," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 20-57, July.
  2. Peter Arcidiacono & Cory Koedel, 2013. "Race and College Success: Evidence from Missouri," NBER Working Papers 19188, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Peter Arcidiacono & Esteban Aucejo & Ken Spenner, 2012. "What happens after enrollment? An analysis of the time path of racial differences in GPA and major choice," IZA Journal of Labor Economics, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 1-24, December.

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