Do Differences in Schools' Instruction Time Explain International Achievement Gaps? Evidence from Developed and Developing Countries
The time that children spend in school varies across countries. Do these differences explain international gaps in pupils' academic achievements? In this paper, I estimate the effects of instructional time on students' achievement using PISA 2006 data, which includes data samples from over 50 countries. I find that instructional time has a positive and significant effect on test scores, and that the effect is much lower in developing countries. Evidence also suggests that the productivity of instructional time is higher in countries which implemented school accountability measures or that gave schools autonomy in budgetary decisions and in hiring/firing teachers.
Special thanks go to Katherine Eyal, Michael Friedman, Amit Meir and Alexander Zablotsky for their outstanding research assistance. I benefited from comments at seminars at the LSE, Rome Tor Vergata, LACEA conference, Itau Bank conference in Rio, Hebrew University, and Paris School of Economics. I thank the ISF for research support. The views expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Victor Lavy, 2015. "Do Differences in Schools' Instruction Time Explain International Achievement Gaps? Evidence from Developed and Developing Countries," The Economic Journal, vol 125(588), pages F397-F424. citation courtesy of