Student Scores Improve If Teachers Given Incentives Upfront, University of Chicago Study

Published: Aug 10, 2012

A bonus payment to teachers can improve student academic performance -- but only when it is given upfront, on the condition that part of the money must be returned if student performance fails to improve, research at the University of Chicago shows. The study showed that students gained as much as a 10 percentile increase in their scores compared to students with similar backgrounds -- if their teacher received a bonus at the beginning of the year, with conditions attached. There was no gain for students when teachers were offered the bonus at the end of the school year, the research found.

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