The Impact of Teacher Training on Student Achievement: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from School Reform Efforts in Chicago

41 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2002 Last revised: 20 Nov 2009

See all articles by Brian Jacob

Brian Jacob

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Lars John Lefgren

Brigham Young University - Department of Economics

Date Written: April 2002

Abstract

While there is a substantial literature on the relationship between general teacher characteristics and student learning, school districts and states often rely on in-service teacher training as a part of school reform efforts. Recent school reform efforts in Chicago provide an opportunity to examine in-service training using a quasi-experimental research design. In this paper, we use a regression discontinuity strategy to estimate the effect of teacher training on the math and reading performance of elementary students. We find that marginal increases in-service training have no statistically or academically significant effect on either reading or math achievement, suggesting that modest investments in staff development may not be sufficient to increase the achievement of elementary school children in high poverty schools.

Suggested Citation

Jacob, Brian and Lefgren, Lars John, The Impact of Teacher Training on Student Achievement: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from School Reform Efforts in Chicago (April 2002). NBER Working Paper No. w8916. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=309605

Brian Jacob (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-384-7968 (Phone)
617-496-5747 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Lars John Lefgren

Brigham Young University - Department of Economics ( email )

130 Faculty Office Bldg.
Provo, UT 84602-2363
United States

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