Students Matter; Teachers Less …

Source: Unz.com, Jul 2019

Over the last 50 years in developed countries, evidence has accumulated that only about 10% of school achievement can be attributed to schools and teachers while the remaining 90% is due to characteristics associated with students.

Teachers account for from 1% to 7% of total variance at every level of education. For students, intelligence accounts for much of the 90% of variance associated with learning gains.

The largest effect of schooling in the developing world is 40% of variance, and that includes “schooling” where children attend school inconsistently, and staff likewise.

I further argue that the majority of the variance in educational outcomes is associated with students, probably as much as 90% in developed economies.

A substantial portion of this 90%, somewhere between 50% and 80% is due to differences in general cognitive ability or intelligence. Most importantly, as long as educational research fails to focus on students’ characteristics we will never understand education or be able to improve it.

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