Posted by: Alexandre Borovik | August 17, 2017

Evaluating students’ evaluations of professors

This paper contains some bizarre observations:
 
Michela Braga, Marco Paccagnella, Michele Pellizzari, Evaluating students’ evaluations of professors. Economics of Education Review 41 (214) 71-88.
Abstract: This paper contrasts measures of teacher effectiveness with the students’ evaluations for
the same teachers using administrative data from Bocconi University. The effectiveness
measures are estimated by comparing the performance in follow-on coursework of
students who are randomly assigned to teachers. We find that teacher quality matters
substantially and that our measure of effectiveness is negatively correlated with the
students’ evaluations of professors. A simple theory rationalizes this result under the
assumption that students evaluate professors based on their realized utility, an
assumption that is supported by additional evidence that the evaluations respond to
meteorological conditions.
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