University of California, San Diego
Mathematica Policy Research
Center for Global Development
When teachers in India are paid cash contingent on increases in children’s test scores, do children really learn more? If they do, are the improvements lasting or transient? Do payments conditional on one kind of learning affect other kinds of learning? And how should incentive pay be structured: for individual teachers, or groups of teachers?
Karthik Muralidharan will present results from a five-year long randomized evaluation of group and individual teacher performance pay programs implemented across a large representative sample of government-run rural primary schools in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Muralidharan finds consistently positive and significant impacts of the individual teacher incentive program on student learning outcomes across all durations of program exposure, with students who completed their full five years of primary school under the program performing significantly better. The group teacher incentive program also had positive (and mostly significant) effects on student test scores, but the effect sizes were always smaller than that of the individual incentive program, and were not significant at the end of primary school for the cohort exposed to the program for five years.
*The Massachusetts Ave. Development Seminar (MADS) is a ten year-old research seminar series that brings some of the world’s leading development scholars to discuss their new research and ideas. The presentations meet an academic standard of quality and are at times technical, but retain a focus on a mixed audience of researchers and policymakers.