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School Effectiveness in China

An Exploratory Study

Pai Peng

This book is a valuable attempt to address the issue of school effectiveness in mainland China. The author applies multi-level modeling and longitudinal student achievement and survey data to evaluate school effectiveness. In the first study, the author analyzes the effects of school resources and classroom processes on student achievement. He also investigates the size of school effects, and the differential school effects for different groups of students. The other two empirical studies focus on the value-added evaluation of academic performance in schools, including consistency, stability and robustness of value-added results. The author also discusses the policy implications of these empirical findings in the Chinese school system.
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When I first flew to Germany on April 12th, 2010, the trip took my friend and me nearly 18 hours (Wuhan-Shanghai-Beijing-Budapest-Frankfurt), just for reducing the travelling cost. The long air travel tired me so much, however, I was in high spirit, especially when I had a superb panorama of the Alps. At that time, I did not predict the journey to a PhD was nearly the same as this trip: long, exhausting, lonely, with a couple of transfers, but exciting, inspiring, challenging, with a good harvest. Now it is the time that I can express my gratitude to the people accompanying me in the last three years.

As the old Chinese maxim said, “A teacher for a day is a father for a lifetime.” I was so lucky since I met two nice “Doktorväter” in DIPF (German Institute for International Educational Research). Thanks are given to Prof. Eckhard Klieme and Prof. Horst Weishaupt. Prof. Eckhard Klieme supervised my dissertation. His diligence, enthusiasm and open mindedness often moved me. I will never forget the alarm after the long discussion on my work in DIPF because we stayed beyond the scheduled time of departure. Prof. Horst Weishaupt kindly helped me apply the scholarship for doctoral study from KAS (Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation). He also provided me with generous financial support for the on-site survey in China. As a curious education researcher from China, I always luckily get answers from him to the numerous questions about the German education system.

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