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Title: Searching for fairer ways of comparing Chilean secondary schools performance: a mixed methods study investigating contextual value added approaches
Author: Munoz-Chereau, Bernardita
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2013
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This Explanatory Mixed Method Design is an original empirical investigation oriented to examine the range, extent and consistency of secondary school effectiveness in the Chilean context, as well as the school processes and factors that might explain any .observed differences. First, a quantitative phase was carried out, oriented to analyse a longitudinal sample of a cohort of 176,896 students, nested within 2,283 schools that took the SIMCE tests in grades 8 and 10 in 2004 and 2006 and their family questionnaires through the statistical technique of multilevel modelling (Goldstein, 1995). The main findings of this phase showed large and statistically significant differences between the estimates of Chilean secondary schools' in different subject outcomes. The percentage of total variance in student's Raw attainment attributable to differences between schools is sizable: 36.9% in language and 47.3% in math. However, after controlling for aspects arguably out of the school control, the equivalent figures were dramatically reduced to 6.1% in language and 13.4% in math, indicating that the pupil intake and contextual features of Chilean secondary schools exert a powerful influence on students' performance. Then a qualitative phase followed, using as a screening instrument schools' CVA performance in language in order to choose two schools (1 with low and 1 with high CVA performance) where an Instrumental Case Study was conducted. Using an analytical framework drawn from the literature, the study identified dimensions that appeared to 'differentiate the two schools, as well as dimensions that appeared similar. The analysis also expanded the framework by including two emerging dimensions: Agency and Trust. These dimensions complemented and enhanced the descriptions of new patterns found in the data, which were broadly in line with, but crucially, also qualify and extended the findings of an earlier study of effective schools in Chile (Bellei' et al, 2004). This evidence, although tentative and exploratory, provides a means to locate the features of more and less effective Chilean secondary schools 'within the broader literature review on educational and school effectiveness research. Finally, the study provides timely contributions to the new assessment framework in place in Chile with the potential to inform and enhance educational policy and practice.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available