More is more? The effect of increased instruction time on students’ performance – evidence from TIMSS 2019

University essay from Lunds universitet/Nationalekonomiska institutionen

Abstract: Students performs differently in international comparable school evaluations such as TIMSS and PISA. One possible explanation discussed in economic research literature is that differences in the amount of instruction time across countries are the reason for international gaps in student performance. Using a within-student between-subject fixed effects model and the data from the TIMSS 2019 evaluation, I find a positive and statistically significant effect for increased instruction time on students’ performance on test scores in math and science in high income countries which is in line with what previously papers has shown. I also find that students with different background characteristics benefit differently from increased instruction time. However, when extending the analysis to other groups of countries and using different types of weights, the effect seems to be lower and statistically insignificant. I conclude that although the effect of increased instruction time on students’ performance is positive in high income countries, the effect seems to vary between countries.

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