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This research examines whether teacher licensure test scores and other teacher qualifications affect high school student achievement. The results are based on longitudinal student-level data from Los Angeles. The achievement analysis uses a value-added approach that adjusts for both student and teacher fixed effects. The results show little relationship between traditional measures of teacher quality (e.g., experience and education level) and student achievement in English Language Arts (ELA) or math. Similarly, teacher aptitude and subject-matter knowledge, as measured on state licensure tests, have no significant effects on student achievement. Achievement outcomes differ substantially from teacher to teacher, however, and the effects of a good ELA or math teacher spillover from one subject to the other.

The research in this report was prepared for the Institute of Education Sciences and conducted by RAND Education.

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