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Online Posting of Teaching Evaluations and Grade Inflation

Author

Listed:
  • Talia Bar

    (University of Connecticut)

  • Vrinda Kadiyali

    (Cornell University)

  • Asaf Zussman

    (Hebrew University of Jerusalem)

Abstract

In 2008 the faculty senate of Cornell University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) decided to publish mean student evaluations of teaching online. The stated goal of the policy was to “provide useful information to students as they design their program of study.” Using 2003-2011 data from CALS we study the effects of this policy change on teaching evaluations, grading outcomes and students’ course choices. Identification relies on the differential response of initially-low and initially-high rated instructors. While student evaluations of teaching increased, the policy change contributed to grade inflation and had little effect on course enrollment and composition.

Suggested Citation

  • Talia Bar & Vrinda Kadiyali & Asaf Zussman, 2014. "Online Posting of Teaching Evaluations and Grade Inflation," Working papers 2014-29, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:uct:uconnp:2014-29
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    File URL: http://web2.uconn.edu/economics/working/2014-29.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Scott E. Carrell & James E. West, 2010. "Does Professor Quality Matter? Evidence from Random Assignment of Students to Professors," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 118(3), pages 409-432, June.
    2. Kristin F. Butcher & Patrick J. McEwan & Akila Weerapana, 2014. "The Effects of an Anti-grade-Inflation Policy at Wellesley College," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 28(3), pages 189-204, Summer.
    3. Beleche, Trinidad & Fairris, David & Marks, Mindy, 2012. "Do course evaluations truly reflect student learning? Evidence from an objectively graded post-test," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(5), pages 709-719.
    4. Talia Bar & Vrinda Kadiyali & Asaf Zussman, 2012. "Putting Grades in Context," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(2), pages 445-478.
    5. Talia Bar & Vrinda Kadiyali & Asaf Zussman, 2009. "Grade Information and Grade Inflation: The Cornell Experiment," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(3), pages 93-108, Summer.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    student evaluations of teaching; grade inflation; higher education;

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General

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