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OpenTeQ - Relazioni a scuola
Last registered on June 06, 2017

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
OpenTeQ - Relazioni a scuola
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0002252
Initial registration date
June 06, 2017
Last updated
June 06, 2017 3:33 PM EDT
Location(s)
Region
Primary Investigator
Affiliation
Milano Bicocca University
Other Primary Investigator(s)
Additional Trial Information
Status
On going
Start date
2016-09-04
End date
2018-09-22
Secondary IDs
Abstract
The quality of the teaching force is the key factor explaining the success of educational systems. We know that teachers differ widely regarding their impact on student achievement, but previous research failed in finding the sources of this variation. Educational economists consider teacher quality as a valuable and measurable feature, but they are not able to explain what generates it. Sociologists identify teacher quality as the consequence of individual and contextual characteristics. Pedagogies interpret it as a multidimensional concept and look at teaching practices and styles in daily classroom routines. This project wants to pool together these three perspectives. We argue that educational economists fail to explain the differences in teacher effectiveness because they look at teachers characteristics that are too far from the dynamic nature of teaching/learning process and because they do not consider the role played by contextual factors.

To prove the relevance of teacher relational skills in explaining the "mysterious" teacher quality, we are building up a collection of the best available tips to improve teacher relational skills, looking for them through international and national literature review and in depth interviews. More precisely, we producing a booklet facing six issues that teachers are called to face related to their relational skills. Each issue is treated not only in the booklet, but also with a very short video. We offered these tips to teachers in a sample of 100 lower secondary schools, randomized out of 198. Teacher used our booklet in the school year 2016/17 and, in within an action-research framework, we discuss the booklet and videos with them through registries on a platform.

An external researcher randomly extracted 229 lower secondary schools from the official list of all public lower secondary schools in Italy, excluding the 11 provinces where we were already implementing a parallel trial (OpenTeQ). All the selected school received a box of booklets and letters to be delivered to Math and Italian teachers in the institute.

The RCT is designed in order to test the impact of our booklet on students' achievement (in the short run, at the end of the first school year, and in the long run, at the end of the following school year - administrative data).
This RCT is paired with OpenTeQ, another trial where we delivered the same treatment, directly meeting teachers in a smaller subsets of schools. The key idea here is estimating the intervention effectiveness, in an at scale setting.
Registration Citation
Citation
Argentin, Gianluca. 2017. "OpenTeQ - Relazioni a scuola." AEA RCT Registry. June 06. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.2252-1.0.
Former Citation
Argentin, Gianluca. 2017. "OpenTeQ - Relazioni a scuola." AEA RCT Registry. June 06. http://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/2252/history/18331.
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Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
The intervention is a professional development tool for teachers, enhaning their relational skills trough:
- a 30 pages booklet containing a collection of the best available tips to improve teacher relational skills, orgnanized in six issues that teachers are called to face daily (hoe to collaborate with colleagues; how to get a collaborative class climate; how to engage students; how to increase students' attention; how to handle troubling students; wow to establish positive relations with parents). The tips were collected both in scientific and grey literature and the booklet was validated through a Delphi process;
- access to a platform containing 1 introductory video and 6 contents video, treating each one a booklet issue;
- a registry were teachers interested in getting a certification were called to express their opinions about the tips and report their usage of the booklet contents.
Selected schools received a box containing booklets for their Math and Italian teachers.
Intervention Start Date
2016-11-18
Intervention End Date
2017-07-15
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
In the short and long run (at the end of the present and following school years), students' achievement (administrative data on students' marks) and performance in National standardized assessment (administrative data on students INVALSI test).
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
An external researcher randomly extracted 229 lower secondary schools from the official list of all public lower secondary schools in Italy. All the selected school received a box of booklets and letters to be delivered to Math and Italian teachers in the institute.
This RCT is paired with OpenTeQ, another trial where we delivered the same treatment, meeting teachers in a smaller subsets of schools. The key idea here is estimating the intervention effectiveness, in an at scale setting.
Thanks to administrative data, we will be able to compare treated schools and (the extremely large) control group schools on students achievement.
Despite the intervention is light touch and limited to a small amount of schools, we can rely on high statistical power because control group is extremely large.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by a computer, by a researcher external to the project staff (Giovanni Abbiati - IRVAPP, [email protected]
Randomization Unit
schools whithin 18 regional blocks
Was the treatment clustered?
Yes
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
229 treated schools
3.949 control group schools
Sample size: planned number of observations
27.500 treated students for each school grade (6th, 7th, 8th) 3.949 control group schools 473.000 control students for each school grade (6th, 7th, 8th)
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
229 treated schools, about 3.100 treated teachers
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
0,06 mdes (standard deviations) - analyses at student level (but we will perform also analyses at school level)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Post-Trial
Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Intervention
Is the intervention completed?
No
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
No
Program Files
Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials
Relevant Paper(s)
REPORTS & OTHER MATERIALS