Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Economics and Finance

Committee Chair(s)

Ben Blau (Committee Chair)


Ben Blau


Professors at a university plausibly have an incentive to give higher grades to students, and these higher grades will be reflected in student evaluations, which are used to assess teaching quality, which could have career impacts. This paper takes advantage of a policy shift at the business school at Utah State University that introduced suggested caps on the average course grades that teachers gave. This allowed instrumental variable analysis to correct for bias in OLS estimations of these impacts. The correlation between grades and students' evaluations of teachers was found to be positive suggesting that student evaluations of teachers are biased by the grades that teachers give, making them less useful as a guiding metric.