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Value-Added to What? How a Ceiling in the Testing Instrument Influences Value-Added Estimation

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Listed:
  • Cory Koedel
  • Julian Betts

Abstract

Value-added measures of teacher quality may be sensitive to the quantitative properties of the student tests upon which they are based. This paper focuses on the sensitivity of value-added to test-score-ceiling effects. Test-score ceilings are increasingly common in testing instruments across the country as education policy continues to emphasize proficiency-based reform. Encouragingly, we show that over a wide range of test-score-ceiling severity, teachers' value-added estimates are only negligibly influenced by ceiling effects. However, as ceiling conditions approach those found in minimum-competency testing environments, value-added results are significantly altered. We suggest a simple statistical check for ceiling effects.

Suggested Citation

  • Cory Koedel & Julian Betts, 2009. "Value-Added to What? How a Ceiling in the Testing Instrument Influences Value-Added Estimation," NBER Working Papers 14778, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14778
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jesse Rothstein, 2010. "Teacher Quality in Educational Production: Tracking, Decay, and Student Achievement," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(1), pages 175-214.
    2. Gorgens, Tue & Horowitz, Joel L., 1999. "Semiparametric estimation of a censored regression model with an unknown transformation of the dependent variable," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 90(2), pages 155-191, June.
    3. Thomas J. Kane & Douglas O. Staiger, 2002. "The Promise and Pitfalls of Using Imprecise School Accountability Measures," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(4), pages 91-114, Fall.
    4. Sass, Tim R. & Semykina, Anastasia & Harris, Douglas N., 2014. "Value-added models and the measurement of teacher productivity," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 9-23.
    5. Eric A. Hanushek & John F. Kain & Steven G. Rivkin & Daniel M. O'Brien, 2005. "The Market for Teacher Quality," Discussion Papers 04-025, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
    6. 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.
    7. Koedel, Cory, 2009. "An empirical analysis of teacher spillover effects in secondary school," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 682-692, December.
    8. Arabmazar, Abbas & Schmidt, Peter, 1981. "Further evidence on the robustness of the Tobit estimator to heteroskedasticity," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 253-258, November.
    9. Richard T. Carson & Yixiao Sun, 2007. "The Tobit model with a non-zero threshold," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 10(3), pages 488-502, November.
    10. Jonah E. Rockoff, 2004. "The Impact of Individual Teachers on Student Achievement: Evidence from Panel Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 247-252, May.
    11. Cory Koedel & Julian Betts, 2007. "Re-Examining the Role of Teacher Quality In the Educational Production Function," Working Papers 0708, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.
    12. John Yinger (ed.), 2004. "Helping Children Left Behind: State Aid and the Pursuit of Educational Equity," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262240467, January.
    13. Charles Brown & Robert Moffitt, 1983. "The Effect of Ignoring Heteroscedasticity on Estimates of the Tobit Model," NBER Technical Working Papers 0027, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Carolyn J. Heinrich & Gerald Marschke, 2010. "Incentives and their dynamics in public sector performance management systems," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(1), pages 183-208.
    2. Dan Goldhaber & Roddy Theobald, 2013. "Managing the Teacher Workforce in Austere Times: The Determinants and Implications of Teacher Layoffs," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 8(4), pages 494-527, October.
    3. Figlio, D. & Karbownik, K. & Salvanes, K.G., 2016. "Education Research and Administrative Data," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
    4. repec:mpr:mprres:8134 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Fitzpatrick, Maria D. & Grissmer, David & Hastedt, Sarah, 2011. "What a difference a day makes: Estimating daily learning gains during kindergarten and first grade using a natural experiment," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 269-279, April.
    6. Papay, John P. & Kraft, Matthew A., 2015. "Productivity returns to experience in the teacher labor market: Methodological challenges and new evidence on long-term career improvement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 105-119.
    7. Koedel, Cory, 2009. "An empirical analysis of teacher spillover effects in secondary school," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 682-692, December.
    8. Alexandra Resch & Eric Isenberg, 2014. "How Do Test Scores at the Floor and Ceiling Affect Value-Added Estimates?," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 80fbbeb5dd504dbab6c51e4d8, Mathematica Policy Research.
    9. repec:mpr:mprres:7896 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Dana Rotz & Matthew Johnson & Brian Gill, 2014. "Value-Added Models for the Pittsburgh Public Schools, 2012-13 School Year," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 11cf6795ac3842b996637b08e, Mathematica Policy Research.
    11. Brian Gill & Julie Bruch & Kevin Booker, 2013. "Using Alternative Student Growth Measures for Evaluating Teacher Performance: What the Literature Says," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 85b7a88ce0cf4597a7efd7a21, Mathematica Policy Research.
    12. Stephen Lipscomb & Brian Gill & Kevin Booker & Matthew Johnson, 2010. "Estimating Teacher and School Effectiveness in Pittsburgh Value-Added Modeling and Results," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 600966d791a14d6497505b870, Mathematica Policy Research.
    13. Ben Ost, 2014. "How Do Teachers Improve? The Relative Importance of Specific and General Human Capital," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 6(2), pages 127-151, April.
    14. repec:mpr:mprres:7644 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Jalava, Nina & Joensen, Juanna Schr√łter & Pellas, Elin, 2015. "Grades and rank: Impacts of non-financial incentives on test performance," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 161-196.
    16. Wiswall, Matthew, 2013. "The dynamics of teacher quality," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 61-78.
    17. Cory Koedel & Teerachat Techapaisarnjaroenkit, 2012. "The Relative Performance of Head Start," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan;Eastern Economic Association, vol. 38(2), pages 251-275.
    18. Dan Goldhaber & Michael Hansen, 2013. "Is it Just a Bad Class? Assessing the Long-term Stability of Estimated Teacher Performance," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 80(319), pages 589-612, July.
    19. Matthew A. Kraft, 2014. "How to Make Additional Time Matter: Integrating Individualized Tutorials into an Extended Day," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 10(1), pages 81-116, November.
    20. repec:umc:wpaper:1308 is not listed on IDEAS
    21. Eric Parsons, 2014. "Does Attending a Low-Achieving School Affect High-Performing Student Outcomes?," Working Papers 1407, Department of Economics, University of Missouri, revised 18 Feb 2015.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid
    • J08 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics Policies
    • J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
    • J45 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Public Sector Labor Markets

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