Study Group

Teacher Licensure Tests in Washington

This project investigates the relationship between teacher licensure test scores and student test achievement and high school course-taking. We focus on three subject/grade combinations—middle school math, ninth-grade algebra and geometry, and ninth-grade biology—and find evidence that a teacher's basic skills test scores are modestly predictive of student achievement in middle school math and highly predictive of student achievement in high school biology.

A teacher's subject-specific licensure test scores are a consistent and statistically significant predictor of student achievement only in high school biology. Finally, we find little evidence that students assigned to middle school teachers with higher basic-skills test scores are more likely to take advanced math and science courses in high school.

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Goldhaber, D., Gratz, T., and Theobald, R. (2017). What’s in a teacher test? Assessing the relationship between teacher licensure test scores and student secondary STEM achievement and course taking. Economics of Education Review 61, 112-129.

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