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Conditions for Successful Tutoring: A Reanalysis of LAU and KESS Data

In Germany, more than 20 percent of secondary school students receive private tutoring. Under some conditions, these tutoring classes are even subsidized by the state. However, the current state of research is inconclusive about whether tutoring reaches its main goal: to improve students' achievement. In particular, the following question remains open: Under which conditions on the part of the students, the teachers, and the lessons, is tutoring successful in terms of improving students' achievement and motivational characteristics? Building on central research on parental homework assistance and instructional quality in regular classes, we developed a differentiated model of the effects of tutoring. In the context of the joint research project MILES (Methodological Issues in Longitudinal Educational Studies) we will use data from the Hamburg panel studies KESS and LAU to evaluate this model. We will focus on the effects of duration and intensity of the tutoring classes, the tutor's qualification, the teaching content, the tutor's behavior when giving feedback to the students, and motivational and achievement-related preconditions of the students on achievement and motivational variables such as academic self-concept, performance anxiety, and work habits. On the methodological level, we will use propensity score matching procedures to build balanced samples of students with and without private tutoring. The effects of the characteristics of the lessons and the students will be estimated by regression analyses.

At the same time, three smaller studies will be developed to examine aspects of the model which cannot be examined with the LAU and KESS data. These studies will focus on the quality of homework assistance during tutoring, on the differentiated measurement of instructional quality and on the effects of tutoring on the duration and variability of out-of-school learning time.

Staff

Dr. Karin Guill
Melike Ömeroğulları
Prof. Dr. Olaf Köller

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