Research using state longitudinal data systems accomplishments and challenges the case of florida
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Research Using State Longitudinal Data Systems: Accomplishments and Challenges – The Case of Florida. Tim R. Sass. Overview. The Status of Statewide Longitudinal data Systems Projects Underway Using Statewide Data from Florida Challenges to Using Statewide Longitudinal Data for Research

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Research using state longitudinal data systems accomplishments and challenges the case of florida l.jpg

Research Using StateLongitudinal Data Systems: Accomplishments and Challenges – The Case of Florida

Tim R. Sass


Overview l.jpg
Overview

  • The Status of Statewide Longitudinal data Systems

  • Projects Underway Using Statewide Data from Florida

  • Challenges to Using Statewide Longitudinal Data for Research

  • What Lies Ahead


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The Status of State Longitudinal Data Systems

  • Data Quality Campaign’s “10 Essential Elements”

    • A unique statewide student identifier that connects student data across key databases across years

    • Student-level enrollment, demographic and program participation information

    • The ability to match individual students’ test records from year to year to measure academic growth

    • Information on untested students and the reasons they were not tested

    • A teacher identifier system with the ability to match teachers to students

    • Student-level transcript information, including information on courses completed and grades earned

    • Student-level college readiness test scores

    • Student-level graduation and dropout data

    • The ability to match student records between the P–12 and higher education systems

    • A state data audit system assessing data quality, validity and reliability


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The Status of State Longitudinal Data Systems

  • States That Can Track Student Gains and Match Teachers to Students

    • Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, West Virginia, Wyoming

      • North Carolina researchers do this indirectly through the identity of the teacher administering exams in elementary school

      • Some states have only recently acquired the ability to match students and teachers

        • Kentucky (2006-07), Wyoming (2006-07)



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Research Projects Using Statewide Longitudinal Data From Florida

  • School Choice

    • “Charter Schools and Student Achievement in Florida” (Sass (2006))

      • Mature charters on par with traditional public schools in math and yield higher reading scores than the average traditional public school

      • Charter school competition associated with small improvement in math achievement in traditional public schools

    • “Charter Schools and Educational Attainment” (Booker and Sass)

      • Will investigate the impact of charter high school attendance on high school graduation and college attendance in Florida and in Chicago

    • “Vouchers and Special Education” (Sass)

      • Will analyze the decision to accept a voucher and the effects of vouchers on the supply of private schools and the achievement of special education students who remain in public schools


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Research Projects Using Statewide Longitudinal Data From Florida

  • Peer Effects

    • “Classroom Peer Effects” (Burke and Sass)

      • Preliminary evidence suggests that peer influences are significant and the effects are non-linear

        • Low-achieving (lowest quintile) students worse or no better off in classes with more high-achieving (top quintile) peers

        • Mid-level students generally worse off with more low-achieving peers and better off with high-achieving peers

        • High-achieving students better off with more high-achieving peers and worse off with a greater fraction of low-achieving peers


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Research Projects Using Statewide Longitudinal Data From Florida

  • Teacher Training

    • “Teacher Training, Teacher Quality and Student Achievement” (Harris and Sass (2007))

      • Experience matters, especially over the first five years

      • Pedagogical content knowledge matters, both pre-service and in-service

      • Other forms of preparation do not seem to impact teacher effectiveness

      • No significant correlation between a teacher’s college entrance exam scores and later effectiveness as a teacher

  • Teacher Preparation Programs

    • In conjunction with researchers from New York, Louisiana and Ohio, will be analyzing the relative effectiveness of teachers who obtain certification through various routes


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Research Projects Using Statewide Longitudinal Data From Florida

  • National Board Certification

    • “The Effects of NBPTS-Certified Teachers on Student Achievement” (Harris and Sass (2007))

      • NBPTS certification provides a positive signal of teacher effectiveness in some cases, though the ability of NBPTS certification to identify high-quality teachers varies considerably across grades and subjects

      • Results are sensitive to the exam used to measure student achievement

      • No evidence that the NBPTS process itself enhances teacher quality

      • Little of no evidence of positive spillovers from NBPTS certified teachers to non-NBPTS-certified teachers


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Research Projects Using Statewide Longitudinal Data From Florida

  • Teacher Labor Markets

    • “A Longitudinal Analysis of Teacher Mobility: Intra-District Moves, Inter-District Moves and Departure Decisions” (Feng (2007))

      • Exit decisions influenced by teacher salaries relative to other occupations and the proportion of minority students in their school

      • Inter-district moves determined by relative salaries across districts and minority enrollment

      • Intra-district movement toward schools with higher student achievement and fewer minority students

      • Minority teachers’ job decisions less effected by minority student enrollment than those of their white colleagues


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Research Projects Using Statewide Longitudinal Data From Florida

  • Accountability

    • “School Accountability and Teacher Job Choice” (Feng, Figlio and Sass)

      • Will investigate the impact of school accountability pressures on teachers decisions to move between schools or exit teaching entirely

      • Will exploit the fact that Florida changed the mechanism for grading schools which lead some schools to face increased accountability pressure and lessened the pressure faced by other schools


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Challenges to the Use of Statewide Longitudinal Data Florida

  • Achievement Tests and the Measurement of Student Achievement Gains

    • Relatively little known about the effects of alternative assessment measures on measured impacts

      • Test score scaling

        • Validity of using achievement tests to measure intertemporal gains in achievement

        • Criterion-reference exams versus developmental scale scores

        • Norming scores by grade and year

      • Choice of test instrument

        • Some evidence that results differ across tests (Harris and Sass (2007)


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Challenges to the Use of Statewide Longitudinal Data Florida

  • Methodology

    • How well do “quasi-experimental” methods control for selection biases?

      • Recent evidence on value-added models versus random assignment by Cantrell, Fullerton, Kane and Staiger (2007)

    • Inconsistent Estimation Methods and Specification in “Value-Added” Achievement Models

      • Student and teacher effects versus student and teacher covariates

      • Random versus fixed effects models

      • Gain scores versus partial persistence models

      • Inclusion/exclusion of Peer Effects


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Challenges to the Use of Statewide Longitudinal Data Florida

  • Use of Teacher Effects to Measure Teacher Quality

    • Not much known about inter-temporal consistency of individual teacher effects

      • Koedel and Betts (2006)

    • Little evidence on sensitivity of teacher effect estimates to changes in model specification

    • Use in policy research versus use for accountability and merit pay


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The Future of Research Using Statewide Longitudinal Data Florida

  • Cross-State Analyses

    • Due to lack of data, most statewide research so far has been limited to Florida, North Carolina and Texas

      • Many studies using large urban school districts, such as New York, Chicago and Los Angeles

    • Data availability in other states will help determine if previous findings are robust across geographic areas

      • Variability in effectiveness of NBPTS-certified teacher in Florida and in North Carolina found by Ladd, Sass and Harris (2007)

    • May be able to exploit cross-state variation in policy environments

      • RAND charter school project


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The Future of Research Using Statewide Longitudinal Data Florida

  • Linking Value-Added Measures to Qualitative Evidence

    • Comparison of Teacher Observations to Value-Added Measures of Teacher Quality

      • Rockoff, et al.

    • Comparison of Principal Evaluations of Teachers to Value-Added Measures

      • Harris and Sass (2007)

  • Matching Survey Evidence to Administrative Data


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