Hard Facts

Some quotes from the Overcoming Bias blog from the book Hard Facts. (I’ve cleaned up some spelling errors.)

Merit pay for teachers is an idea that is almost 100 years old and has been subject to much research.  In one study conducted in 1918, “48 percent of U.S. school districts sampled used compensation systems that they called merit pay.” … The evidence shows that merit-pay plans seldom last longer than five years and that merit pay consistently fails to improve student performance.  … [Researchers] also showed that cheating [by teachers] was quite sensitive to the size of the incentives provided for enhancing student scores.  … The same problems emerged when merit-pay systems were implemented in the 1980s. … “It is like policy makers suffer from amnesia.” (pp.22-24) … Hard Facts: Teaching

Another good one.

Students who are in school or who have chosen a major for instrumental reasons – in order to get a better job or to make more money – are much more likely to cheat than students who have chosen a course of study because of their interest in in the subject matter.  (p.124) Hard Facts: Incentives

Another book to add to my wishlist, I guess.