Essays on the teacher labor market
Author(s)McKie, Allison Nicole
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Economics.
Joshua Angrist and David H. Autor.
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This thesis presents three empirical essays on the teacher labor market. Chapter one exploits the exogenous variation in teacher pay arising from state-mandated pay increases to identify the causal effect of teacher pay on teacher qualifications. Results suggest that, while state-mandated increases do raise teacher pay, they lead in the short run to a reduction in teacher quality as measured by the selectivity of a teacher's undergraduate institution and the probability that math and science teachers majored in these fields. This result appears to be due to the fact that, in the wake of an across-the-board pay hike, newly hired teachers are of lower quality than incumbents. Chapter two estimates the impact of state-mandated pay raises on the likelihood of a teacher exiting the state public school system. To explore the effects on the quality of the teacher workforce, the analysis also investigates whether the responsiveness of the exit decision to the pay raise varies with the subject matter expertise of the teacher, as measured by the type of degree held. The findings suggest that general pay raises tend to increase the retention of experienced teachers, particularly at the secondary school level.(cont.) However, the strength of the retention effect varies with the subject matter expertise of the teacher and the union status of the district. In nonunion districts, the retention effects are stronger for experienced teachers with academic degrees than for those with education degrees. The opposite relationship holds in union districts. Chapter three uses a conditional logit model to investigate the determinants of a new teacher's choice of state in which to begin teaching, as a function of salary, student characteristics, and geographic proximity to the college state. The findings indicate that geographic proximity and proportion minority enrollment dominate the location decision. The overall salary level does not appear to influence the probability of a teacher locating in a state.
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Economics, 2007.Includes bibliographical references.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Economics.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology