NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Back to results
ERIC Number: ED518378
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 10
Abstractor: ERIC
Teacher Pay for Performance: Experimental Evidence from the Project on Incentives in Teaching (POINT)
Springer, Matthew G.; Ballou, Dale; Hamilton, Laura; Le, Vi-Nhuan; Lockwood, J. R.; McCaffrey, Daniel F.; Pepper, Matthew; Stecher, Brian M.
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness
This paper presents the results of a rigorous experiment examining the impact of pay for performance on student achievement and instructional practice. This study, conducted by the National Center on Performance Incentives in partnership with the RAND Corporation examines an experimental pay for performance program administered via a randomized controlled study in the Metro Nashville Public Schools (MNPS) district. The research questions are: (1) Does performance-pay alone improve student outcomes?; and (2) Does the opportunity to earn bonuses alter teachers' instructional practices and attitudes? The Project on Incentives in Teaching (POINT) experiment was conducted in MNPS district middle schools (grades 5-8) for three academic years from 2006-07 through 2008-09. The authors find no significant difference overall between students whose teachers were assigned to the treatment group and those whose teachers were assigned to the control group. In addition, there were no significant differences in any single year, nor were there significant differences for students in grades 6-8 when separate effects were estimated for each grade level. The authors do find significant positive effects of being eligible for bonuses in the second and third years of the project in grade 5. The difference amounts to between one half and two-thirds of a year's typical growth in mathematics. However, for the 2007-08 fifth grade cohort (the only cohort they have been able to follow as yet as sixth graders), these effects are no longer evident the following year. That is, it makes no difference to grade 6 test scores whether a student's fifth grade teacher was in the treatment group or the control group. There was also a significant difference between students of treatment and control teachers in fifth grade social studies (years 2 and 3 of the project) and fifth grade science (year 3). No differences for these subjects were found in other grades. Based on survey responses, more than 80 percent of treatment teachers agreed that POINT "has not affected my work, because I was already working as effectively as I could before the implementation of POINT." Fewer than a quarter agreed that they had altered their instructional practices as a result of the POINT experiment. (Contains 2 figures and 3 tables.) [For the full report, "Teacher Pay for Performance: Experimental Evidence from the Project on Incentives in Teaching," see ED513347.]
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness. 2040 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208. Tel: 202-495-0920; Fax: 202-640-4401; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE)
Identifiers - Location: Tennessee
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A