Feedback, teacher vam, teacher evaluation, teacher effectiveness, student achievement outcomes, classroom observations, instructional impact, evaluation systems


The purpose of this study was two-fold: (a) to determine the relationship between the number of classroom observations and teacher VAM scores and (b) to identify the relationship between the types of feedback provided to teachers and student achievement outcomes as measured by VAM scores. De-identified data for the sample set of teachers in a large urban school district was gathered for the 2013-2014 year from iObservation by administrators observing teachers using the domains of the Marzano instructional model. The number of observations were compared to VAM scores to determine if teachers with a greater number of observations received higher VAM ratings. The comments recorded and submitted as feedback were also reviewed. Data were analyzed to identify relationships between the types of feedback provided to teachers and student achievement outcomes as measured by VAM scores. No significant relationship existed between VAM scores and number of observations or percentage of comments for teachers at any grade level. In addition, no significant relationship existed between predominant feedback for teachers and VAM scores. The information in this study was valuable for understanding the relationships that exist among instructional practice scores, value-added measures, and learning gains to drive conversations with teachers regarding rigorous instruction. Observations and feedback should be a tool for improvement of instruction, but the data confirmed this process continues to be compliance based with inflated scores that do not match the level of performance of students. Changing this is strongly linked to the provision of feedback associated with improving instruction and holding teachers accountable in meeting the standards outlined in the feedback. Observers are in need of professional development on how to provide effective feedback in the areas of instruction that will make the biggest impact on student achievement. Continuing to put time and effort into implementing and monitoring evaluation systems without further training and emphasis on feedback will result in the same lack of impact on student achievement outcomes and may even undermine the role of observers in providing support to teachers.


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Graduation Date





Murray, Barbara A.


Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


College of Education and Human Performance


Teaching, Learning, and Leadership

Degree Program

Educational Leadership; Executive








Release Date

May 2015

Length of Campus-only Access


Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)

Included in

Education Commons