Measuring Teacher Conscientiousness and its Impact on Students: Insight from the Measures of Effective Teaching Longitudinal Database

63 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2016

See all articles by Albert Cheng

Albert Cheng

University of Arkansas - Department of Education Reform

Gema Zamarro

University of Arkansas - Department of Education Reform; Center for Economic and Social Research (CESR)

Date Written: April 22, 2016

Abstract

Although research has been unable to find strong links between observable teacher characteristics and a teacher’s ability to improve student achievement, it has generally not considered the role that teacher non-cognitive skills play in affecting student outcomes. In this article, we validate several novel performance-task measures of teacher conscientiousness based upon the effort that teachers exert completing a survey and use these measures to examine the role that teacher conscientiousness plays in affecting both student test scores and student non-cognitive skills. We conduct our analysis using the Measure of Effective Teaching Longitudinal Database where teachers were randomly assigned to their classrooms in the second year of the study. We exploit this random assignment to estimate causal impacts of teachers on their students’ outcomes during the second year of the MET project. We find that our survey-effort measures of teacher conscientiousness capture important dimensions of teacher quality. More conscientious teachers are more effective at improving their student conscientiousness but not their student test scores. Additional analysis suggests that traditional measures of teacher quality largely fail to capture a teacher’s ability to improve student conscientiousness, though measures of teacher quality based upon student ratings and one particular classroom observation protocol are exceptions.

Suggested Citation

Cheng, Albert and Zamarro, Gema, Measuring Teacher Conscientiousness and its Impact on Students: Insight from the Measures of Effective Teaching Longitudinal Database (April 22, 2016). EDRE Working Paper No. 2016-05. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2768970 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2768970

Albert Cheng (Contact Author)

University of Arkansas - Department of Education Reform ( email )

201 Graduate Education Building
Fayetteville, AR 72701
United States

Gema Zamarro

University of Arkansas - Department of Education Reform ( email )

201 Graduate Education Building
Fayetteville, AR 72701
United States

Center for Economic and Social Research (CESR) ( email )

635 Downey Way
Los Angeles, CA 90089-3332
United States

HOME PAGE: http://works.bepress.com/gema_zamarro/

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