The Predictive Validity of Teacher Candidate Letters of Reference

Richard W. Mason, Mark P. Schroeder

Abstract


Letters of reference are widely used as an essential part of the hiring process of newly licensed teachers. While
the predictive validity of these letters of reference has been called into question it has never been empirically
studied. The current study examined the predictive validity of the quality of letters of reference for forty-one
student teachers in relation to their attainment of full time employment and performance during their first year of
teaching. Results indicated that while letter quality was predictive of whether or not full-time employment was
obtained, it was not predictive of performance during the first year of teaching. Findings also suggest that hiring
practices should be re-examined and additional measures of teacher quality should be incorporated to increase
teacher excellence in schools.

Full Text: PDF DOI: 10.5539/jel.v3n3p67

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Journal of Education and Learning   ISSN 1927-5250 (Print)   ISSN 1927-5269 (Online)

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