Management by results: Student evaluation of faculty teaching and the mis-measurement of performance
Using data on 4 years of courses at American University, regression results show that actual grades have a significant, positive effect on student evaluations of teaching (SETs), controlling for expected grade and fixed effects for both faculty and courses, and for possible endogeneity. Implications are that the SET is a faulty measure of teaching quality and grades a faulty signal of future job performance. Students, faculty, and provost appear to be engaged in an individually rational but socially destructive game of grade inflation centered on the link between SETs and grades. When performance is hard to measure, pay-for-performance, embodied by the link between SETs and faculty pay, may have unintended adverse consequences.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Shapiro, Carl & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1984. "Equilibrium Unemployment as a Worker Discipline Device," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 433-44, June.
- William E. Becker, 2000. "Teaching Economics in the 21st Century," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(1), pages 109-119, Winter.
- Paul Isely & Harinder Singh, 2005. "Do Higher Grades Lead to Favorable Student Evaluations?," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(1), pages 29-42, January.
- Richard Sabot & John Wakeman-Linn, 1991. "Grade Inflation and Course Choice," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 159-170, Winter.
- Ethel B. Jones & John D. Jackson, 1990. "College Grades and Labor Market Rewards," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(2), pages 253-266.
- Edward P. Lazear, 2000. "The Power of Incentives," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 410-414, May.
- Michael A. McPherson, 2006. "Determinants of How Students Evaluate Teachers," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(1), pages 3-20, January.
- Paul M. Anglin & Ronald Meng, 2000. "Evidence on Grades and Grade Inflation at Ontario's Universities," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 26(3), pages 361-368, September.
- Kiridaran Kanagaretnam & Robert Mathieu & Alex Thevaranjan, 2003. "An economic analysis of the use of student evaluations: implications for universities," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(1), pages 1-13.
- Spence, A Michael, 1973. "Job Market Signaling," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 87(3), pages 355-74, August.
- Krautmann, Anthony C. & Sander, William, 1999. "Grades and student evaluations of teachers," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 59-63, February.
- Baker, George P, 1992. "Incentive Contracts and Performance Measurement," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 598-614, June.
- Kreps, David M, 1997. "Intrinsic Motivation and Extrinsic Incentives," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 359-64, May.
- L. F. Jameson Boex, 2000. "Attributes of Effective Economics Instructors: An Analysis of Student Evaluations," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(3), pages 211-227, September.
- Sproule, Robert, 2002. "The underdetermination of instructor performance by data from the student evaluation of teaching," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 287-294, June.
- Paul W. Grimes & Meghan J. Millea & Thomas W. Woodruff, 2004. "Grades—Who's to Blame? Student Evaluation of Teaching and Locus of Control," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(2), pages 129-147, April.
- Mark Thornton, 2004. "Does Academic Publishing Pass the Real Market Test?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 120(1_2), pages 41-61, 07.
- Rothstein, J.M.Jesse M., 2004. "College performance predictions and the SAT," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 121(1-2), pages 297-317.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:27:y:2008:i:4:p:417-428. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.