Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Understanding the dynamic nature of teacher/classroom effects on educational outcomes : a cross-cultural investigation
Author: White, Elaine Karyn
ISNI:       0000 0004 6422 2665
Awarding Body: Goldsmiths, University of London
Current Institution: Goldsmiths College (University of London)
Date of Award: 2017
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
The idea that teachers differ substantially in their ability to motivate and educate students has pervaded educational research for decades. While the education system, and teachers in particular, provide an enormously important service, many people hold teachers almost entirely responsible for differences between classes and for individual students’ performance. The belief that the ‘teacher effect’ is such that students would perform better or worse given a specific teacher remains unfounded, as true experimental design is difficult to apply. The present thesis, employing pseudo-experimental methods, investigated potential teacher/classroom effects on several educational outcomes. The five empirical chapters in this thesis explored whether students’ motivation, academic performance, and perception of learning environment were affected by their teachers and/or classmates, as reflected in average differences between classes. Investigations were conducted longitudinally and cross-culturally, in three different education systems using data from four samples. Two samples were secondary school students aged 10 to 12 years, in their first year of secondary education, from the UK and Russia, and two samples were large representative developmental twin studies, the Twins Early Development Study (TEDS) from the UK, and the Quebec Newborn Twin Study (QNTS) from Quebec, Canada. Average differences were observed across classrooms and teacher groups, effect sizes ranging from 2% to 25%. The results suggested a weak influence of current subject teacher that was difficult to disentangle from several confounding factors, such as peer influences, selection processes, individual differences in ability and perceptions, teacher characteristics and evocative processes. The findings suggest that student outcomes, rather than being predominantly influenced by teacher effects, are under multiple influences. Overall, the results call for caution in considering ‘added value’ or ‘teacher effect’ measures as valid criteria for current education policies that affect teacher promotion and employment prospects.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral