ERIC Number: ED251480
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Mar
Reference Count: 0
The Use of Student Achievement Test Scores as Criteria for Allocation of Teacher Merit Pay.
Berk, Ronald A.
This paper describexs the difficulties encountered in developing a teacher merit pay system based on pretest-posttest class gain scores. The different stages of development are scrutinized, from the initial stage of achievement test selection through the specification of a criterion score for superior teacher productivity. The pretest-posttest gain score model is afflicted with numerous sources of invalidity and measurement error. Between-class, between-grade, and between-subject variability of objectives, instruction, resources, and student characteristics preclude: (1) the trouble-free selection of an appropriate achievement test; (2) the precise estimation of gain; (3) the setting of a meaningful criterion for superior teacher productivity; and (4) the inference that estimated gain is attributable solely to teacher effort. Although there does not seem to be any single source of invalidity or error (systematic or random) that is large enough to invalidate the model, the combination of multiple sources analyzed cumulatively does prove fatal and warrants rejection of the model. Gain score evidence can be so misleading that it should not even be used to corroborate other evidence of teacher effectiveness or performance. (Author/BS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Evaluation Problems
Note: Paper presented at the National Conference on Merit Pay for Teachers (Sarasota, FL, March 22-23, 1984).