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Does Teacher Quality Affect Student Performance? Evidence From An Italian University

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  • Maria De Paola

Abstract

In this paper, we analyse whether the characteristics of university teaching staff matter with regard to students' performance and interest in the discipline. We use data on about 1000 students enrolled on the first‐level degree course in business and economics at a medium‐sized Italian university. Thanks to the random assignment of students to different teaching classes during their first year, we are able to analyse the effect that teachers with different characteristics, in terms of experience and research productivity, produce both on students' performance, measured in terms of the grades obtained at subsequent examinations, and on courses chosen. Our results suggest that teacher quality has statistically significant effects on students' grades in subsequent courses. These effects are also robust after controlling for unobserved individual characteristics. On the other hand, we find less clear evidence when relating teacher quality to student involvement with a subject. It emerges that research productivity does not produce a statistically significant effect on the probability of a student undertaking additional courses in a subject, while more experienced teachers have a negative impact. However, also this effect does not become statistically significant when we run separate regressions for different disciplines.

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  • Maria De Paola, 2009. "Does Teacher Quality Affect Student Performance? Evidence From An Italian University," Bulletin of Economic Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(4), pages 353-377, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:buecrs:v:61:y:2009:i:4:p:353-377
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-8586.2008.00299.x
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    Cited by:

    1. Brunello, Giorgio & De Paola, Maria, 2013. "The Costs of Early School Leaving in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 7791, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    2. Mohan Zhang & Jing Tian & Hao Ni & Guangbao Fang, 2021. "Exploring Teacher Leadership and the Factors Contributing to It: An Empirical Study on Chinese Private Higher Education Institutions," SAGE Open, , vol. 11(1), pages 21582440211, March.
    3. Balcázar, Carlos Felipe & Nopo, Hugo R., 2014. "Broken Gears: The Value Added of Higher Education on Teachers' Academic Achievement," IZA Discussion Papers 8477, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    4. Peter Madzík & Pavol Budaj & Dalibor Mikuláš & Dominik Zimon, 2019. "Application of the Kano Model for a Better Understanding of Customer Requirements in Higher Education—A Pilot Study," Administrative Sciences, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(1), pages 1-18, January.
    5. Michela Ponzo & Vincenzo Scoppa, 2012. "The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly: Teaching Evaluations, Beauty And Abilities," Working Papers 201204, Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza "Giovanni Anania" - DESF.
    6. Eline Sneyers & Kristof De Witte, 2017. "The interaction between dropout, graduation rates and quality ratings in universities," Journal of the Operational Research Society, Palgrave Macmillan;The OR Society, vol. 68(4), pages 416-430, April.
    7. Danilowicz-Gösele, Kamila, 2016. ""A" is the aim?," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 291, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.

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    JEL classification:

    • A2 - General Economics and Teaching - - Economic Education and Teaching of Economics

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