Twin Study Bolsters Arguments for Good Teachers
Researchers Highlight the Reading Achievement of Elementary School Siblings
A new study focusing on pairs of identical and fraternal twins in Florida schools bolsters a growing body of evidence on the importance of good teachers.
For the study , which was published last week in the journal Science , researchers from Florida State University in Tallahassee drew on data for a racially and ethnically diverse group of more than 800 pairs of twins in 1st and 2nd grade classrooms across the state. Among identical twins with different teachers, the study found, those whose teachers were judged to be more effective in teaching reading tended to have higher scores on tests of oral literacy than siblings with less effective teachers.
Looking at both the fraternal and the identical twins, the researchers also found that there was more variation attributable to genetics among the twins in higher-achieving classrooms than was the case in classrooms with lower average achievement. According to the researchers, that suggests that teachers play a role in “moderating” students’ achievement—helping them, in other words, to grow...
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