Instructional Quality in Economics classrooms (InQuE)

Studies from empirical educational research demonstrate the impact of teachers on students’ learning outcomes. The central task of teachers is to design instructional learning processes, i.e., to prepare the subject matter in a way that provides students with the best possible learning opportunities. In recent years, empirical research has therefore focused on the investigation of different aspects of teaching quality. There is a wide range of studies on generic, subject-independent aspects of instructional quality, which typically examine the three dimensions of instructional quality: cognitive activation, student support, and classroom management. However, there are increasing calls for a subject-specific investigation of instructional processes. In particular, there is a lack of studies on instructional quality in economics, despite the increasing number of studies on the teachers’ competencies regarding this subject.

The research project InQuE focuses on teaching quality in economics education, conducting a video study in German high schools. In addition to the analysis of the three basic dimensions, the quality of two core teaching practices is examined: (1) explaining and representing subject matter (quality of explanations, visualizations, and examples used) and (2) handling student errors (quality of diagnosis of student errors, reaction and feedback to student errors, error tolerance). Among others, the project addresses the following research questions:

  1. What constitutes teaching quality in economics?
  2. How are the basic dimensions of instructional quality and the quality of subject-specific core practices interrelated?
  3. How stable are aspects of teaching quality over time?
  4. What is the relationship between students' perceived instructional quality and observers' ratings of instructional quality?
  5. Which factors determine instructional quality in economics classrooms?
  6. How does instructional quality in economics classrooms affect students’ performance?


Duration:            Mai, 2022 – April 2024

Funding:              Young Scholar Fund, Excellence Strategy, University of Konstanz

Cooperation:     Patricia Köpfer, University of Hohenheim

Liane Platz, University of Konstanz