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What makes special-education teachers special? Teacher training and achievement of students with disabilities

Author

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  • Feng, Li
  • Sass, Tim R.

Abstract

Using statewide data from Florida, we analyze the impact of both pre-service and in-service training on the ability of teachers to promote academic achievement among students with disabilities. We find students with disabilities whose teacher is certified in special education have greater achievement in both math and reading than similar students whose teacher is not special-education certified. However, students without disabilities experience slightly lower achievement when taught by a special-education certified teacher. In-service professional development has no effect on the value-added of teachers in special education courses, but non-disabled students whose regular education teachers received special education training exhibit modestly higher achievement. Similarly, the gain in effectiveness associated with teacher experience is greater for teachers of regular education courses than for teachers of special education courses. Teachers with advanced degrees are more effective in boosting the math achievement of students with disabilities than are those with only a baccalaureate degree.

Suggested Citation

  • Feng, Li & Sass, Tim R., 2013. "What makes special-education teachers special? Teacher training and achievement of students with disabilities," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 122-134.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:36:y:2013:i:c:p:122-134
    DOI: 10.1016/j.econedurev.2013.06.006
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Figlio, D. & Karbownik, K. & Salvanes, K.G., 2016. "Education Research and Administrative Data," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
    2. Laura López Torres & Diego Prior, 2014. "Measuring school demand in the presence of spatial dependence. A conditional approach," Investigaciones de Economía de la Educación volume 9,in: Adela García Aracil & Isabel Neira Gómez (ed.), Investigaciones de Economía de la Educación 9, edition 1, volume 9, chapter 4, pages 117-141 Asociación de Economía de la Educación.
    3. O'Donnell, Rebecca May Neal, 2013. "Early Childhood Education for Children with Autism: How Teacher and Classroom Characteristics Influence Student Learning," Master's Theses 155283, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
    4. Louise Voldby Beuchert & Anne Brink Nandrup, 2014. "The Danish National Tests – A Practical Guide," Economics Working Papers 2014-25, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Special education; Teacher training;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J44 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Professional Labor Markets and Occupations

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