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What works to improve the quality of student learning in developing countries?

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  • Masino, Serena
  • Niño-Zarazúa, Miguel

Abstract

We conducted a systematic review to identify policy interventions that improve education quality and student learning in developing countries. Relying on a theory of change typology, we highlight three main drivers of change of education quality: (1) supply-side capability interventions that operate through the provision of physical and human resources, and learning materials; (2) policies that through incentives seek to influence behaviour and intertemporal preferences of teachers, households, and students; (3) bottom-up and top-down participatory and community management interventions, which operate through decentralisation reforms, knowledge diffusion, and increased community participation in the management of education systems. Overall, our findings suggest that interventions are more effective at improving student performance and learning when social norms and intertemporal choices are factored in the design of education policies, and when two or more drivers of change are combined. Thus, supply-side interventions alone are less effective than when complemented by community participation or incentives that shift preferences and behaviours.

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  • Masino, Serena & Niño-Zarazúa, Miguel, 2016. "What works to improve the quality of student learning in developing countries?," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 53-65.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:injoed:v:48:y:2016:i:c:p:53-65
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijedudev.2015.11.012
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    Cited by:

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    3. Ashrita Saran & Howard White & Kerry Albright & Jill Adona, 2020. "Mega‐map of systematic reviews and evidence and gap maps on the interventions to improve child well‐being in low‐ and middle‐income countries," Campbell Systematic Reviews, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 16(4), December.
    4. Yui-Yip Lau & Cristina Dragomir & Yuk-Ming Tang & Adolf K. Y. Ng, 2021. "Maritime Undergraduate Students: Career Expectations and Choices," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 13(8), pages 1-18, April.
    5. Virgi A. Sari, 2019. "Educational Assistance and Education Quality in Indonesia: The Role of Decentralization," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 45(S1), pages 123-154, December.
    6. Riddell, Abby & Niño-Zarazúa, Miguel, 2016. "The effectiveness of foreign aid to education," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 23-36.
    7. Jules Gazeaud & Claire Ricard, 2021. "Conditional cash transfers and the learning crisis: evidence from Tayssir scale-up in Morocco," NOVAFRICA Working Paper Series wp2102, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Nova School of Business and Economics, NOVAFRICA.
    8. Mouzinho Mário & Celso M. Monjane & Ricardo Santos, 2020. "The education sector in Mozambique: From access to epistemic quality in primary education," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2020-130, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    9. Miguel Niño-Zarazúa, 2015. "Aid, education policy, and development," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2015-135, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    10. Wen, Christine, 2020. "Educating rural migrant children in interior China: The promise and pitfall of low-fee private schools," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 79(C).
    11. Trinidad, Jose Eos, 2020. "Material resources, school climate, and achievement variations in the Philippines: Insights from PISA 2018," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 75(C).
    12. Muhammad Niqab & Janet Hanson & Arthur Bangert & Sathiamoorthy Kannan & Sailesh Sharma & Abdul Ghaffar, 2019. "Measuring Organizational Citizenship Behaviors (OCB) in Secondary Schools in Pakistan and a Comparison with Factors of a School Growth Mindset Culture," International Journal of Learning and Development, Macrothink Institute, vol. 9(2), pages 83-115, June.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Education quality; Student learning; Education policy; Developing countries; Systematic review;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • C10 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - General
    • O50 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - General

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