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Adjusting content to individual student needs: Further evidence from an in-service teacher training program

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  • Adrien Bouguen

    (PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, PSE - Paris School of Economics)

Abstract

Adapting instruction to the specific needs of each student is a promising strategy to improve overall academic achievement. In this article, I study the impact of an intensive in-service teacher training program on reading skills offered to kindergarten teachers in France. The program modifies the lesson content and encourages teachers to adapt instruction to student needs by dividing the class according to initial achievement. While assessing impact is usually difficult due to the presence of ability bias and teacher selection, I show that in this context, a value-added model that controls for school and teacher characteristics constitutes a legitimate strategy to estimate the treatment effect. Results show that all students benefiting from the program progressed in reading skills at the end of the year. Besides, weaker students progressed faster on less-advanced competences (such as letter recognition), while stronger students improved their reading skills. This suggests that teachers adjusted content to students' needs. Finally, a cost-effectiveness analysis reveals that the program is approximately three times more cost-effective than reducing class size in France.

Suggested Citation

  • Adrien Bouguen, 2015. "Adjusting content to individual student needs: Further evidence from an in-service teacher training program," PSE Working Papers halshs-01128184, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-01128184
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-01128184v2
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Adrien Bouguen & Julien Grenet & Marc Gurgand, 2017. "La taille des classes influence-t-elle la réussite scolaire ?," PSE-Ecole d'économie de Paris (Postprint) hal-02453596, HAL.
    2. Adrien Bouguen & Julien Grenet & Marc Gurgand, 2017. "Does class size influence student achievement?," Post-Print halshs-02522747, HAL.
    3. Jacob, Brian, 2017. "When evidence is not enough: Findings from a randomized evaluation of Evidence-Based Literacy Instruction (EBLI)," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 5-16.
    4. Adrien Bouguen & Julien Grenet & Marc Gurgand, 2017. "Does class size influence student achievement?," Institut des Politiques Publiques halshs-02522747, HAL.
    5. Adrien Bouguen & Julien Grenet & Marc Gurgand, 2017. "La taille des classes influence-t-elle la réussite scolaire ?," Institut des Politiques Publiques hal-02453596, HAL.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    teacher training; inequality; Early childcare program; teaching practices and content;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality

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