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Testing

Author

Listed:
  • Bergbauer, Annika B.

    () (Ifo Institute for Economic Research)

  • Hanushek, Eric A.

    () (Stanford University)

  • Woessmann, Ludger

    () (Ifo Institute for Economic Research)

Abstract

School systems regularly use student assessments for accountability purposes. But, as highlighted by our conceptual model, different configurations of assessment usage generate performance-conducive incentives of different strengths for different stakeholders in different school environments. We build a dataset of over 2 million students in 59 countries observed over 6 waves in the international PISA student achievement test 2000-2015. Our empirical model exploits the country panel dimension to investigate reforms in assessment systems over time, where identification comes from taking out country and year fixed effects along with a rich set of student, school, and country measures. We find that the expansion of standardized external comparisons, both school-based and student-based, is associated with improvements in student achievement. The effect of school-based comparison is stronger in countries with initially low performance. Similarly, standardized monitoring without external comparison has a positive effect in initially poorly performing countries. By contrast, the introduction of solely internal testing and internal teacher monitoring including inspectorates does not affect student achievement. Our findings point out the pitfalls of overly broad generalizations from specific country testing systems.

Suggested Citation

  • Bergbauer, Annika B. & Hanushek, Eric A. & Woessmann, Ludger, 2018. "Testing," IZA Discussion Papers 11683, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11683
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Michela Braga & Daniele Checchi & Elena Meschi, 2013. "Educational policies in a long-run perspective," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 28(73), pages 45-100, January.
    2. Thomas S. Dee & Brian Jacob, 2011. "The impact of no Child Left Behind on student achievement," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(3), pages 418-446, June.
    3. Burgess, Simon & Wilson, Deborah & Worth, Jack, 2013. "A natural experiment in school accountability: The impact of school performance information on pupil progress," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 57-67.
    4. repec:aea:aecrev:v:107:y:2017:i:6:p:1535-63 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Bishop, John H, 1997. "The Effect of National Standards and Curriculum-Based Exams on Achievement," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 260-264, May.
    6. O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), 1999. "Handbook of Labor Economics," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 3, number 3.
    7. David J. Deming & Sarah Cohodes & Jennifer Jennings & Christopher Jencks, 2016. "School Accountability, Postsecondary Attainment, and Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 98(5), pages 848-862, December.
    8. Avinash Dixit, 2002. "# Incentives and Organizations in the Public Sector: An Interpretative Review," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 37(4), pages 696-727.
    9. repec:aea:aecrev:v:107:y:2017:i:6:p:1685-1717 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Bishop, J., 1997. "The Effect of national Standards and Curriculum-Based Exams on Achievement," Papers 97-01, Cornell - Center for Advanced Human Resource Studies.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    student assessment; testing; accountability; student achievement; international; PISA;

    JEL classification:

    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy
    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • P51 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems - - - Comparative Analysis of Economic Systems

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