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Are Teachers Crucial for Academic Achievement? Finland Educational Success in a Comparative Perspective

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Published: 2015-03-30

Author

Eduardo Andere

Visiting Research Professor, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development New York University

Keywords: Finland education; preservice teacher education; teacher education; comparative education and policy; teacher quality; student success

Abstract

Teachers are seen as the main reason behind the high, equal, and consistent student performance in Finland as measured by the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), and there is a lot of truth in this. Candidates for teacher training programs are selected through a rigorous process, for example. However, using primarily the case of Finland, this paper seeks to show that factors beyond the quality of teachers are also involved in explaining high performance on international standardized tests by students around the world. The policy of attracting high-caliber students and providing high-quality preservice training, suggested by organizations such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and McKinsey & Company, does not necessarily seem to be related to high student performance in all countries.

 

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Author Biography

Eduardo Andere

Visiting Research Professor, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development New York University

Dr. Andere is an educational analyst and writer on topics of public policy, education policy and comparative education. He is visiting researcher professor at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development at New York University. He holds a PhD in Political Science from Boston College (1992), and Master’s degrees in Economics and Public Administration from Boston University and Harvard University, respectively. Among his publications: 1) “The lending power of PISA: league tables and ‘best practice’ in education.” 2008. Comparative Education Research Center. School of Education, the University of Hong Kong. 2) Teachers' Perspectives on Finnish School Education: Creating Learning Environments. 2014. SPRINGER. Switzerland.

PDF

Published: 2015-03-30

How to Cite

Andere, E. (2015). Are Teachers Crucial for Academic Achievement? Finland Educational Success in a Comparative Perspective. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 23, 39. https://doi.org/10.14507/epaa.v23.1752