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Teaching in the Lab: Financial Incentives in the Education Process

  • Christoph Helbach
  • Klemens Keldenich


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    This study uses a laboratory experiment to analyze the effectiveness of performance-based monetary incentives in the teaching process. The process of knowledge transmission is recreated using a video-stream. Four different teacher payment schemes are compared, three of which depend on the student‘s success. Furthermore, the experiment is done with two different subject pools: prospective teachers and regular students. Results indicate that prospective teachers do not react to monetary incentives in the given task. However, regular students do react in the expected way: Teachers transmit a significantly higher share of their knowledge when paid according to student performance.

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    Paper provided by Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen in its series Ruhr Economic Papers with number 0328.

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    Length: 25 pages
    Date of creation: Apr 2012
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:rwi:repape:0328
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    1. Dohmen Thomas & Falk Armin & Huffman David & Sunde Uwe & Schupp Jürgen & Wagner Gert G., 2009. "Individual Risk Attitudes: Measurement, Determinants and Behavioral Consequences," Research Memorandum 039, Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR).
    2. Ananish Chaudhuri & Sara Graziano & Pushkar Maitra, 2006. "Social Learning and Norms in a Public Goods Experiment with Inter-Generational Advice -super-1," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(2), pages 357-380.
    3. Fehr, Ernst & Fischbacher, Urs & von Rosenbladt, Bernhard & Schupp, Jürgen & Wagner, Gert G., 2003. "A nation-wide laboratory: Examining trust and trustworthiness by integrating behavioral experiments into representative surveys," Discussion Papers 2003/1, Technische Universität Berlin, School of Economics and Management.
    4. Bull, Clive & Schotter, Andrew & Weigelt, Keith, 1987. "Tournaments and Piece Rates: An Experimental Study," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(1), pages 1-33, February.
    5. Randall Eberts & Kevin Hollenbeck & Joe Stone, 2000. "Teacher Performance Incentives and Student Outcomes," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 00-65, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
    6. Jeannette Brosig & Timo Heinrich & Thomas Riechmann & Ronnie Schöb & Joachim Weimann, 2010. "Laying off or Not? the Influence of Framing and Economics Education," International Review of Economic Education, Economics Network, University of Bristol, vol. 9(1), pages 44-55.
    7. George A. Akerlof, 1982. "Labor Contracts as Partial Gift Exchange," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 97(4), pages 543-569.
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