Peer Effects, Teacher Incentives, and the Impact of Tracking


Kremer, Michael, Esther Duflo, and Pascaline Dupas. 2011. “Peer Effects, Teacher Incentives, and the Impact of Tracking.” American Economic Review 101 (5 (August 2011): 1739 -1774.
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Peer Effects.pdf878 KB


To the extent that students benefit from high-achieving peers, tracking will help strong students and hurt weak ones. However, all students may benefit if tracking allows teachers to better tailor their instruction level. Lower-achieving pupils are particularly likely to benefit from tracking when teachers have incentives to teach to the top of the distribution. We propose a simple model nesting these effects, and test its implications in a randomized tracking experiment conducted with 121 primary schools in Kenya. While the direct effect of high-achieving peers is positive, tracking benefited lower-achieving pupils indirectly by allowing teachers to teach at their level.

Last updated on 11/04/2015