Making the Grade: The Sensitivity of Education Program Effectiveness to Input Choices and Outcome Measures

Resource type
Journal Article
Authors/contributors
Title
Making the Grade: The Sensitivity of Education Program Effectiveness to Input Choices and Outcome Measures
Abstract
This paper demonstrates the acute sensitivity of education program effectiveness to the choices of inputs and outcome measures, using a randomized evaluation of a mother-tongue literacy program. The program raises reading scores by 0.64SDs and writing scores by 0.45SDs. A reduced-cost version instead yields statistically-insignificant reading gains and some large negative effects (-0.33SDs) on advanced writing. We combine a conceptual model of education production with detailed classroom observations to examine the mechanisms driving the results; we show they could be driven by the program initially lowering productivity before raising it, and potentially by missing complementary inputs in the reduced-cost version.
Publication
The Review of Economics and Statistics
Pages
1-45
Date
March 6, 2020
ISSN
0034-6535
Short Title
Making the Grade
Accessed
21/07/2020, 20:12
Library Catalog
MIT Press Journals
Extra
Publisher: MIT Press shortDOI: 10/gg7spz
Citation
Kerwin, J. T., & Thornton, R. L. (2020). Making the Grade: The Sensitivity of Education Program Effectiveness to Input Choices and Outcome Measures. The Review of Economics and Statistics, 1–45. https://doi.org/10.1162/rest_a_00911