Tag Archives: VAM

Welcome to the Profit of Education website. Continuing the conversation begun in the book Profit of Education, we discuss the latest economic evidence on education reform.

Classroom assignment policies

To what extent are students assigned to classrooms randomly (with respect to ability) and to what extent does prior achievement affect assignments and teacher matches? Hedvig Horvath points out that we should consider two separate aspects of this question. Tracking: Are students … Continue reading

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Making VAM public

Back in 2010, the Los Angeles Times published value-added scores for LA teachers. This may have been good journalism, but from the point of view of helping education the appropriate technical term is “dumbass.” Hey, value-added is an important tool. Judging … Continue reading

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3 Responses to Making VAM public

  1. RT @MrPABruno: “main effect of [VAM] publication was to let more savvy parents arrange for their kids to get the better teachers” http://t.…

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Value-added on height???

If you’re a fan of value-added, a new paper by Marianne Bitler, Sean Corcoran, Thurston Domina, and Emily Penner, “Teacher Eff ects on Student Achievement and Height: A Cautionary Tale,” is going to give you the willies. Since hearing the results … Continue reading

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  1. @nayoung_edu says:

    RT @ThadDomina: “The willies-generating result is that the estimated teacher VAM on height is nearly as large as it is on academics!” http:…

  2. @epopppp says:

    RT @ThadDomina: “The willies-generating result is that the estimated teacher VAM on height is nearly as large as it is on academics!” http:…

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Value-added in Los Angeles

Several of my recent posts have been on a controversy among economists about whether value-added measures of teacher effectiveness are unbiased or not. Bacher-Hicks, Kane, and Staiger look at teachers who switch schools in Los Angeles and find that estimates made … Continue reading

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  1. Ed says:

    I wonder what role geography and transportation infrastructure play in some of the observed patterns. NY and LA are both larger cities and districts, but NYC is dense NE city with robust public transportation infrastructure, whereas LA is a sprawling metropolis with very weak public transportation. This may lead to very different labor market dynamics, factors influencing job decisions and sorting patterns, etc.

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More on the American Statistical Association and value-added

Back in April I wrote about the American Statistical Association Statement on Using Value-Added Models. I wrote in part, Some of what the ASA says sounds ever-so-sensible, but reflects a failure to understand statistical models. Raj Chetty, John Friedman, and Jonah Rockoff … Continue reading

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Is value-added valuable?

Alert: half wonk, half not wonk. Last week I wrote about a new piece by Jesse Rothstein. Rothstein continued the argument that he’s been putting forth that value-added measures misstate teachers’ true contributions because they inadequately adjust for students’ learning … Continue reading

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Is value-added about the teacher, or about the students the teacher gets handed?

The main tool used by economists to measure the impact of a teacher is the value-added score, or VAM. Loosely, we see how much the test score of a typical student of a particular teacher improves over the course of … Continue reading

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Predicting future teacher performance: value-added versus principal evaluations

Douglas Harris and Tim Sass use Florida data to ask an awfully important practical question: If you have both teacher value-added numbers and principal evaluations, which does better at predicting future teacher contributions? Do the two methods each have something separate … Continue reading

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American Statistical Association Statement on Using Value-Added Models

The American Statistical Association (ASA) has adopted a statement on the use of value-added models (VAM). Basically, the ASA says that VAM can be useful, but that it has problems too. I doubt there are any VAM researchers who will … Continue reading

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One Response to American Statistical Association Statement on Using Value-Added Models

  1. Harry Travis says:

    It would have been helpful for you to have provided background for this extraordinary statement from the ASA. After all, it has been economists, mostly, who have taken serious $ to exploit vast data sets, mostly carelessly, where educational psychologists have demurred for decades. It is not as though any of the models are insightful, however “econometrically” sophisticated the estimates of error structures.

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Heterogeneity in “learning that lasts”

One of the criticisms of measuring teacher quality with test scores and value-added measures is that test scores don’t measure learning that really matters, in particular that whatever test scores do measure isn’t something that lasts. However, there is increasing … Continue reading

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