CLEG & LEA seminar: Value-added scores and evaluation of value-added models

Research groups Curriculum Studies, Leadership and Educational Governance (CLEG) and Large-scale Educational Assessment (LEA) welcomes you to this seminar. Speakers are Kjartan Steffensen and Lars Kirkebøen from Statistics Norway, and Tina Trujillo is from UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Education.

Value-added models (VAM) include a range of statistical approaches aiming at isolating the contribution of for instance teachers, schools or programs to students’ growth in achievement or other outcome measures. In large-scale research studies, VAMs have proven valuable for the study of factors affecting achievement and effects of programs or interventions. Increasingly, VAMs are also used for system-wide monitoring of teacher or school quality and regularly the measures are reported in the public domain.

Developing an indicator for schools and municipalities’ contribution to students’ achievement

In this seminar, the authors of the relatively recent report about value added model for primary and lower secondary schools in Norway, Kjartan Steffensen and Lars Kirkebøen, SSB, present the model used to develop an indicator for schools and municipalities’ contribution to students’ achievement (“skolebidragsindikatorer”). Both municipalities and schools are encouraged to use these value-added indicators in their improvement work, but in Norway (unlike the USA-context) it is emphasized that the purpose is not to use this tool to evaluate teachers.

Validity issues when using VAM as a consequential teacher evaluation tool

Afterwards Associate Professor Tina Trujillo, UC Berkeley, will speak to the validity issues that arise when policymakers use VAM as a consequential teacher evaluation tool, based on research done in an American context. It is vital to reflect on how VAM can be used and misused, because in the USA, VAMs, designed to evaluate student test score gains from one year to the next, are often promoted as tools to evaluate evidence of teacher contributions to student learning. Using VAMs for individual teacher evaluation is based on the belief that measured achievement gains for a specific teacher’s students reflect that teacher’s “effectiveness.” This attribution, however, assumes that student learning is measured well by a given test, is influenced by the teacher alone, and is independent from the growth of classmates and other aspects of the classroom context. None of these assumptions is well supported by current evidence.


Kjartan Steffensen and Lars Kirkebøen work at Statistics Norway which is the main producer of official statistics in Norway.

Kjartan Steffensen works as a Senior Advisor in the Division for education statistics in Statistics Norway. His work is mainly in the area of primary and secondary education statistics and analysis based on large administrative micro data set. He has also worked extensively on European student and adult learning surveys, and has previously served as a national expert to the European Commission, Directorate General Education and Culture.

Lars J. Kirkebøen has a PhD in Economics from the University of Oslo, and works in the Research department of Statistics Norway. His research is based on quantitative analysis of large administrative micro data sets, and his research interests include school quality, effects of interventions, educational choice and students’ long-term outcomes. He has published in top economics journals. He has also worked extensively with central and local Norwegian government agencies, including on the topic of value-added models.

Dr. Tina Trujillo is an Associate Professor at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Education and the Faculty Director of the Principal Leadership Institute. Dr. Trujillo uses tools from political science and critical policy studies to study the political dimensions of urban district reform, the instructional and democratic consequences of high-stakes testing and accountability policies for students of color and English Learners, and trends in urban educational leadership. She is currently collaborating with Ruth Jensen and Jorunn Møller in a comparative project which aims to explore the impacts of value-oriented principal preparation programs on school leaders' practice.


The organisers of the event are Curriculum Studies, Leadership and Educational Governance (CLEG) and Large-scale Educational Assessment (LEA) , two research groups at the Faculty of Educational Sciences at the University of Oslo.


Jorunn Møller, professor at the Department of Teacher Education and School Research
Rolf V. Olsen, professor at the Centre for Educational Measurement



Published May 12, 2017 3:28 PM - Last modified May 12, 2017 3:28 PM