Working Paper 09/221- abstract

Test Scores, Subjective Assessment and Stereotyping of Ethnic Minorities (PDF, 693kB)

Simon Burgess and Ellen Greaves

We assess whether ethnic minority pupils are subject to low teacher expectations. We exploit the English testing system of “quasi-blind” externally marked tests and “non-blind” internal assessment to compare differences in these assessment methods between White and ethnic minority pupils. We find evidence that some ethnic groups are systematically “under-assessed” relative to their White peers,while some are “over-assessed”. We propose a stereotype model in which a teacher’s local experience of an ethnic group affects assessment of current pupils; this is supported by the data.