The Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science commissioned an impact evaluation of a Master’s degree for teachers. With this evaluation a theoretical (academic) and empirical (causal) relationship between a Master’s degree for teachers and the quality of teaching is being explored. This report contains a baseline study that identifies the potential effects of an Master’s degree, sets out a proposed research design and includes an initial survey taken by teachers.

Potential effects of a Master’s degree on teachers and their students have been identified from an analysis of policy documents academic literature and 35 consultations with people concerning the education system. Actual effects can be explored by comparing outcome measures between teachers with and without a Master’s degree at various points in time (by applying the difference-in-difference method). Therefor an intervention group (teachers taking a Master’s degree) and a control group (teachers without a Master’s degree) are selected. Since this baseline study provides a good basis for a quantitative impact evaluation, follow-up surveys will reveal the actual effects of a Master’s degree at the higher vocational (HBO) level.