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Everyone’s Doing It, But What Does Teacher Testing Tell Us About Teacher Effectiveness?

  • Dan Goldhaber
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    This paper explores the relationship between teacher testing and teacher effectiveness using a unique data set that links teachers to their individual students. The findings show a positive relationship between some teacher licensure tests and student achievement. But, they also suggest that states face significant tradeoffs when they require particular performance levels as a precondition to becoming a teacher. Some teachers whom we might wish were not in the teacher work force based on their contribution toward student achievement are eligible to teach based on their performance on the tests; other individuals who would be effective teachers are ineligible. For example, the results suggest that upping the elementary teacher licensure test standard from the one currently used in North Carolina to the higher standard used in Connecticut would lead to the exclusion of less than 0.5 percent of the teacher work force estimated to be very ineffective teachers, but would also result in the exclusion of 7 percent of the teacher work force estimated to be effective teachers.

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    File URL: http://jhr.uwpress.org/cgi/reprint/XLII/4/765
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    Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

    Volume (Year): 42 (2007)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages:

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    Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:42:y:2007:i4:p765-794
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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    1. Stinebrickner, Todd R, 2001. "A Dynamic Model of Teacher Labor Supply," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(1), pages 196-230, January.
    2. George J. Stigler, 1971. "The Theory of Economic Regulation," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 2(1), pages 3-21, Spring.
    3. Dan Goldhaber & Emily Anthony, 2007. "Can Teacher Quality Be Effectively Assessed? National Board Certification as a Signal of Effective Teaching," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(1), pages 134-150, February.
    4. Donald Boyd & Pamela Grossman & Hamilton Lankford & Susanna Loeb & James Wyckoff, 2006. "How Changes in Entry Requirements Alter the Teacher Workforce and Affect Student Achievement," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 1(2), pages 176-216, April.
    5. Richard J. Murnane & Randall J. Olsen, 1990. "The Effects of Salaries and Opportunity Costs on Length of Stay in Teaching: Evidence from North Carolina," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(1), pages 106-124.
    6. Ehrenberg, Ronald G. & Brewer, Dominic J., 1995. "Did teachers' verbal ability and race matter in the 1960s? Coleman revisited," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 1-21, March.
    7. Strauss, Robert P. & Sawyer, Elizabeth A., 1986. "Some new evidence on teacher and student competencies," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 41-48, February.
    8. Podgursky, Michael & Monroe, Ryan & Watson, Donald, 2004. "The academic quality of public school teachers: an analysis of entry and exit behavior," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(5), pages 507-518, October.
    9. Anita A. Summers & Barbara L. Wolfe, 1975. "Which school resources help learning? Efficiency and equity in Philadelphia public schools," Business Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, issue Feb, pages 4-29.
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