A Multinational Study of the Determinants of Student Achievement in Mathematics and Science: Policy Options for Pakistan

Gulab Khan


Enhancing quality of learning for students has remained a primary target of states and economies around the world. Education systems around the world consider student test scores as objective measures (though with limited explanatory power) to determine the “quality” of student learning. Various strategies are adopted to enhance this matric. One tool that schools use to improve student achievement in the form of test scores has been teacher evaluation. In recent decades, teacher evaluation has come into the spotlight around the world in the current policy debates, reforms, and policy analyses. Therefore, as a significant contribution to the current policy environment, this study explores determinants of student achievement by analyzing data on student background, school traits, teacher evaluation, and country traits. It employs a robust dataset using two surveys i.e., Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2009 and Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) 2008. Using Ordinary Least Squares as the analytic model, the study explores relationships between test scores in Mathematics and Science and determinants of student achievement at student, school, and country levels. The study finds mixed results for developmental and high-stakes approaches to teacher evaluation. Powerful associations between determinants of achievement at student, school, and country level suggest that it is important to explore implications of these factors on student achievement in schools.

Permanent link to this article: http://pje.aiou.edu.pk/?p=506