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The Academic and Labor Market Returns of University Professors

  • Braga, Michela

    ()

    (University of Milan)

  • Paccagnella, Marco

    ()

    (Bank of Italy)

  • Pellizzari, Michele

    ()

    (University of Geneva)

This paper estimates the impact of college teaching on students' academic achievement and labor market outcomes using administrative data from Bocconi University (Italy) matched with Italian tax records. The estimation exploits the random allocation of students to teachers in a fixed sequence of compulsory courses. We find that good teaching matters more for the labor market than for academic performance. Moreover, the professors who are best at improving the academic achievement of their best students are also the ones who boost their earnings the most. On the contrary, for low ability students the academic and labor market returns of teachers are largely uncorrelated. We also find that professors who are good at teaching high ability students are often not the best teachers for the least able ones. These findings can be rationalized in a model where teaching is a multi-dimensional activity with each dimension having differential returns on the students' academic outcomes and labor market success.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7902.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7902
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  1. William E. Becker & William Bosshardt & Michael Watts, 2012. "How Departments of Economics Evaluate Teaching," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(3), pages 325-333, July.
  2. Angrist, Joshua D. & Guryan, Jonathan, 2008. "Does teacher testing raise teacher quality? Evidence from state certification requirements," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 483-503, October.
  3. Scott E. Carrell & James E. West, 2008. "Does Professor Quality Matter? Evidence from Random Assignment of Students to Professors," NBER Working Papers 14081, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Giacomo De Giorgi & Michele Pellizzari & Silvia Redaelli, 2010. "Identification of Social Interactions through Partially Overlapping Peer Groups," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 241-75, April.
  5. Michela Braga & Marco Paccagnella & Michele Pellizzari, 2011. "Evaluating students’ evaluations of professors," Working Papers 384, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  6. Raj Chetty & John N. Friedman & Nathaniel Hilger & Emmanuel Saez & Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach & Danny Yagan, 2010. "How Does Your Kindergarten Classroom Affect Your Earnings? Evidence From Project STAR," NBER Working Papers 16381, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Oriana Bandiera & Valentino Larcinese & Imran Rasul, 2010. "Heterogeneous Class Size Effects: New Evidence from a Panel of University Students," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(549), pages 1365-1398, December.
  8. Daniel Aaronson & Lisa Barrow & William Sander, 2007. "Teachers and Student Achievement in the Chicago Public High Schools," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25, pages 95-135.
  9. Esther Duflo & Rema Hanna & Stephen P. Ryan, 2012. "Incentives Work: Getting Teachers to Come to School," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(4), pages 1241-78, June.
  10. Eric P. Bettinger & Bridget Terry Long, 2010. "Does Cheaper Mean Better? The Impact of Using Adjunct Instructors on Student Outcomes," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(3), pages 598-613, August.
  11. Brown, Byron W. & Saks, Daniel H., 1987. "The microeconomics of the allocation of teachers' time and student learning," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 6(4), pages 319-332, August.
  12. Joshua D. Angrist & Victor Lavy, 1999. "Using Maimonides' Rule To Estimate The Effect Of Class Size On Scholastic Achievement," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 533-575, May.
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