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Competition, cream-skimming and department performance within secondary schools

By Peter Davies, Shqiponja Telhaj, David Hutton, Nick Adnett and Robert Coe


The performance of departments has been largely neglected in previous studies of subject choice in secondary schools. This is a significant omission because analysis at departmental level enables a fuller assessment of the effects of competition and specialisation on pupil performance. This paper examines relationships between both absolute and value-added measures of departmental performance and the likelihood of students being entered for examination in a subject. It examines these relationships with reference to four option subjects: French, German, Geography and History. It utilises data from an Economic and Social Research Council-funded study which examined trends and patterns in departmental effectiveness using a sample of 664 schools which participated in the Yellis monitoring system for a minimum of five years during the period 1995-2002

Topics: LB1603 Secondary Education. High schools
Publisher: Routledge
Year: 2009
DOI identifier: 10.1080/01411920802041707
OAI identifier:
Provided by: LSE Research Online
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