Teacher Characteristics and Student Performance: Evidence from Random Teacher-Student Assignments in China

60 Pages Posted: 15 Mar 2021

See all articles by Wei Huang

Wei Huang

Emory University - Department of Economics; National University of Singapore (NUS) - NUS Business School; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Teng Li

Sun Yat-sen University

Yinghao Pan

National University of Singapore (NUS) - NUS Business School

Jinyang Ren

Jiangxi University of Finance and Economics

Abstract

This paper investigates the impacts of teacher characteristics on student performance using a nationally representative and randomly assigned teacher-student sample in China. We find that having a more experienced or female homeroom teacher (HRT) with additional classroom management duties significantly improves students' test scores and cognitive and noncognitive abilities. In contrast, these effects are not observed for subject teachers who are responsible only for teaching. More experienced or female HRTs are also associated with a better classroom environment, more self-motivated students, more parental involvement, and higher parental expectations. These mechanisms explain 10-25 percent of HRT effects on test scores and cognitive ability and 50-60 percent of HRT effects on noncognitive ability. Our findings highlight the importance of teacher management skills in education production.

JEL Classification: I21, J24

Suggested Citation

Huang, Wei and Li, Teng and Pan, Yinghao and Ren, Jinyang, Teacher Characteristics and Student Performance: Evidence from Random Teacher-Student Assignments in China. IZA Discussion Paper No. 14184, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3803728

Wei Huang (Contact Author)

Emory University - Department of Economics ( email )

1602 Fishburne Drive
Atlanta, GA 30322
United States

National University of Singapore (NUS) - NUS Business School ( email )

15 Kent Ridge Dr
Singapore, 129800
Singapore

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Teng Li

Sun Yat-sen University ( email )

135, Xingang Xi Road
Guangzhou, Guangdong 510275
China

Yinghao Pan

National University of Singapore (NUS) - NUS Business School ( email )

15 Kent Ridge Dr
Singapore, 129800
Singapore

Jinyang Ren

Jiangxi University of Finance and Economics

South Lushan Road
Nanchang, 330013
China

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