The relative effectiveness of teachers and learning software: Evidence from a field experiment in El Salvador

Resource type
Report
Authors/contributors
Title
The relative effectiveness of teachers and learning software: Evidence from a field experiment in El Salvador
Abstract
This study provides novel evidence on the relative effectiveness of computer-assisted learning (CAL) software and traditional teaching. Based on a randomized controlled trial in Salvadoran primary schools, we evaluate three interventions that aim to improve learning outcomes in mathematics: (i) teacher-led classes, (ii) CAL classes monitored by a technical supervisor, and (iii) CAL classes instructed by a teacher. As all three interventions involve the same amount of additional mathematics lessons, we can directly compare the productivity of the three teaching methods. CAL lessons lead to larger improvements in students’ mathematics skills than traditional teacher-centered classes. In addition, teachers add little to the effectiveness of learning software. Overall, our results highlight the value of CAL approaches in an environment with poorly qualified teachers.
Place
Switzerland
Institution
University of Bern
Date
2020
Pages
43
Language
en
Library Catalogue
Zotero
Citation
Buchel, K., Jakob, M., Kuhnhanss, C., Steffen, D., & Brunetti, A. (2020). The relative effectiveness of teachers and learning software: Evidence from a field experiment in El Salvador (p. 43). University of Bern. https://ideas.repec.org/p/bss/wpaper/36.html