Grades as Incentives
44 Pages Posted: 12 Dec 2008 Last revised: 21 Mar 2012
Date Written: March 15, 2010
This paper examines how grade incentives affect student learning across a variety of courses at two universities, using for identification the discrete rewards offered by the standard A-F letter grade system. We develop five predictions about effort provision in the presence of the thresholds that separate these discrete rewards, only one of which has been previously tested in the economics literature generally. All are rejected in our data. Either grade incentives do not influence student effort appreciably on the margin, or the additional effort in ineffective.
Keywords: educational assessment, thresholds, behavioral incentives
JEL Classification: I21, A22, D10
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation