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What Do Test Scores Miss? The Importance of Teacher Effects on Non-Test Score Outcomes
Journal of Political Economy (2018)
  • C. Kirabo Jackson
I present a model in which teachers affect a variety of student outcomes through their influence on both cognitive and noncognitive skill. Empirically, I proxy for students’ noncognitive skill using non-test-score behaviors. These behaviors include absences, suspensions, course grades, and on-time grade progression in 9th grade. Teachers have meaningful effects on both test scores and behaviors. However, teacher effects on test scores and those on behaviors are weakly correlated. Teacher effects on noncognitive proxy measures (i.e. behaviors) predict larger impacts on high-school completion and other longer-run outcomes than their effects on test-scores. Relative to using only test-score measures, using teacher effects on both test-score and noncognitive proxy measures more than doubles the variance of predictable teacher impacts on longer-run outcomes. (JEL I21, J00)

Replication code is availbe at this link:
  • Teacher quality,
  • test scores,
  • value added,
  • long term effects,
  • non-cognitive skills,
  • socioemotional skills
Publication Date
Citation Information
Jackson, C. Kirabo. (2018) "What Do Test Scores Miss? The Importance of Teacher Effects on Non-Test Score Outcomes" Journal of Political Economy, Volume 126, Issue 5 October 2018, Pages1785-2178