Estimating the Efficacy of "Art-Integrated Learning" Pedagogy - Evidence from a Randomised Control Trial in India

Last registered on February 21, 2023


Trial Information

General Information

Estimating the Efficacy of "Art-Integrated Learning" Pedagogy - Evidence from a Randomised Control Trial in India
Initial registration date
February 16, 2023

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
February 21, 2023, 7:11 AM EST

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.


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Primary Investigator

Indian Institute of Management Calcutta

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
National Taiwan University
PI Affiliation
National Cheng Kung University

Additional Trial Information

On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
The status of elementary education in developing countries, particularly India, is very poor. Reports suggest that children’s enrollment rates in school are as high as 95% in the country but less than 50% of these enrolled children can perform basic reading and arithmetic tasks. This suggests that the participation in schooling is not getting translated into actual human capital accumulation, which is likely to have adverse labor market consequences in the long run.While there are several ways one could try and improve learning levels of children through demand side interventions like conditional cash transfers or in-kind transfers and gifts, there is not much convincing evidence of success of these initiatives. On the other hand, supply side interventions such as improving school infrastructure, providing better quality teachers, integrating technology in teaching have also been tried with limited success. In this backdrop, the new National Education Policy (NEP) has been launched by the government of India in 2020, which emphasizes innovative pedagogy in attempting to achieve the targeted levels of learning. In line with this, we are interested in understanding the role of alternative ways of teaching and pedagogical innovations in improvement of cognitive as well as non-cognitive development of children. Specifically, we want to estimate if “art-integrated” learning can improve academic outcomes of children. The underlying hypothesis would be that traditional teaching approaches may be relatively less attractive to children, particularly from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds with low base levels of family education. Consequently, the major emphasis should be to make these children attracted to learning and putting efforts towards human capital accumulation by making the curriculum more interesting yet less challenging to grasp. Integrating the pedagogy with art forms such as music, dance, theatre etc. may enable superior cognition and attention from these children which eventually could lead to higher academic achievement..
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Ao, Chon Kit, Somdeep Chatterjee and Josie Chen. 2023. "Estimating the Efficacy of "Art-Integrated Learning" Pedagogy - Evidence from a Randomised Control Trial in India." AEA RCT Registry. February 21.
Experimental Details


We use “art-integrated” learning approach to test if there are significant improvements in children’s cognitive and non-cognitive outcomes. We use trained experts who use traditional Indian art forms (such as dance and theatre) to teach elementary educational concepts such as grammar, numeracy skills and geometry. We also use this tool to test gender sensitization efforts.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Test Scores, Cognitive Skills, Non Cognitive Outcomes, Gender Sensitivity, Sanitation and Health
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We sample schools in Southern part if West Bengal in association with an NGO known as UPAJ India , a subsidiary of the Behala Global Academy of Fine Arts, and randomly assign the schools into either receiving the intervention of weekly art-integrated lessons or the business-as-usual control group.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Computerized randomized draw
Randomization Unit
School (and groups of schools)
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
11 schools
Sample size: planned number of observations
3500 students and roughly 4000 parents.
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
6 treatment schools in 3 randomly chosen clusters and 5 control schools in 3 randomly chosen clusters
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Research Ethics Committee - National Taiwan university
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number