nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2023‒01‒02
five papers chosen by
Nádia Simões
Instituto Universitário de Lisboa

  1. Do Class Closures Affect Students' Achievements? Heterogeneous Effects of Students' Socioeconomic Backgrounds By Oikawa, Masato; Tanaka, Ryuichi; Bessho, Shun-ichiro; Kawamura, Akira; Noguchi, Haruko
  2. Teachers’ Use of Class Time and Student Achievement By Simon M. Burgess; Shenila Rawal; Eric S. Taylor
  3. Employee Evaluation and Skill Investments: Evidence from Public School Teachers By Eric S. Taylor
  4. Let’s Stay Together: the Effects of Repeated Student-Teacher Matches on Academic Achievement By Facundo Albornoz; David Contreras; Richard Upward
  5. Does Ethnic Diversity in Schools Affect Occupational Choices? By Damiano Pregaldini; Simone Balestra; Uschi Backes-Gellner

  1. By: Oikawa, Masato (Waseda University); Tanaka, Ryuichi (University of Tokyo); Bessho, Shun-ichiro (University of Tokyo); Kawamura, Akira (Kanagawa University of Human Services); Noguchi, Haruko (Waseda University)
    Abstract: This paper examines how class closures affect the academic achievements of Japanese students in primary and middle schools, with a special focus on the heterogeneous effects of the socioeconomic backgrounds of students households. Utilizing the administrative data of students from a city in the Tokyo Metropolitan Area, we estimated the effects of class closures due to flu epidemics, on the students language and math test scores. We find that class closures adversely affect math test scores of economically disadvantaged students. The magnitudes of the negative effects on disadvantaged students are heterogeneous by subject, grade in school, gender, timing of class closures, and students pre-class-closure achievements. Male students from economically disadvantaged households are more susceptible to class closures, and those with relatively low achievements before class closures suffer more seriously from them. The deleterious effects among economically disadvantaged male students are driven not only by reductions in class hours in school, but also by increases in time spent watching TV and playing video games. We also find that school resources can mitigate the negative impact of class closure among economically disadvantaged students. These results indicate the importance of public programs in preventing a negative temporal shock to student learning environments.
    Keywords: class closures, flu epidemic, students' achievements, students' usage of time, instruction time
    JEL: I20 I24
    Date: 2022–11
  2. By: Simon M. Burgess; Shenila Rawal; Eric S. Taylor
    Abstract: We study teachers’ choices about how to allocate class time across different instructional activities, for example, lecturing, open discussion, or individual practice. Our data come from secondary schools in England, specifically classes preceding GCSE exams. Students score higher in math when their teacher devotes more class time to individual practice and assessment. In contrast, students score higher in English if there is more discussion and work with classmates. Class time allocation predicts test scores separate from the quality of the teacher’s instruction during the activities. These results suggest opportunities to improve student achievement without changes in teachers’ skills.
    JEL: I21 J24
    Date: 2022–11
  3. By: Eric S. Taylor
    Abstract: When an employee expects repeated evaluation and performance incentives over time, the potential future rewards create an incentive to invest in building relevant skills. Because new skills benefit job performance, the effects of an evaluation program can persist after the rewards end or even anticipate the start of rewards. I test for persistence and anticipation effects, along with more conventional predictions, using a quasi-experiment in Tennessee schools. Performance improves with new evaluation measures, but gains are larger when the teacher expects future rewards linked to future scores. Performance rises further when incentives start and remains higher even after incentives end.
    JEL: I21 J24 J45 M5
    Date: 2022–11
  4. By: Facundo Albornoz (University of Nottingham/CEPR); David Contreras (University of Nottingham); Richard Upward (University of Nottingham)
    Abstract: We explore the effectiveness of repeating the student-teacher match on test scores, for the universe of 8th graders in Chile using information on all student-teacher matches across multiple subjects and years, and a national, anonymous measure of test scores. We exploit a plausibly exogenous source of variation in the process of repeating matches generated by a discontinuity in teacher retention at the legal retirement age. Repeating matches has a robust positive effect on test scores which aggregates up to the student, class, and schoollevel. As channels, we report a positive effect on attendance, progression, student behaviour and teacher expectations.
    Keywords: student-teacher matches, student achievement, looping
    JEL: I21 I25
    Date: 2022–11
  5. By: Damiano Pregaldini; Simone Balestra; Uschi Backes-Gellner
    Abstract: We study how two distinct dimensions of peer ethnic diversity (ethnic fractionalization and ethnic polarization) affect occupational choice. Using longitudinal administrative data and leveraging variation in ethnic composition across cohorts within schools, we find evidence for two opposing effects. Ethnic fractionalization increases the likelihood of students sorting into people-oriented occupations while ethnic polarization reduces this likelihood. Using data on social and cognitive skills, we provide evidence that exposure to higher levels of ethnic fractionalization enhances the students' formation of social skills and increases the likelihood of students sorting into people-oriented occupations where the returns to these skills are higher.
    Keywords: ethnic diversity, fractionalization, polarization, school, occupational choice
    JEL: H75 I21 J18 J24
    Date: 2022–12

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