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Promoting Infant-Directed Speech in Ghana
Last registered on May 15, 2018


Trial Information
General Information
Promoting Infant-Directed Speech in Ghana
Initial registration date
May 14, 2018
Last updated
May 15, 2018 2:45 PM EDT

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Primary Investigator
Northwestern University
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
PI Affiliation
Stanford University
Additional Trial Information
In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
This study evaluates a low-cost intervention aimed at encouraging mothers and other caregivers to converse with their infants as a way of promoting language and brain development. In our study setting of Ghana, as in many developing countries, the practice of "infant-directed speech" is not common and its value for child development is not fully appreciated by parents. We developed a short (3-minute) animated video that encourages the viewer to talk to, sing to, and read to her babies, and to encourage family members to do so as well. A randomly selected subset of study participants are shown this video. Half of the treatment group is additionally given a calendar with images and messages from the video as a way to keep the message salient and to facilitate common knowledge in her household about these lessons. We will measure the impact of the interventions on child development and language skill approximately 4 years after the intervention.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Dupas, Pascaline, Seema Jayachandran and Mark Walsh. 2018. "Promoting Infant-Directed Speech in Ghana." AEA RCT Registry. May 15. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.2943-1.0.
Former Citation
Dupas, Pascaline et al. 2018. "Promoting Infant-Directed Speech in Ghana." AEA RCT Registry. May 15. http://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/2943/history/29522.
Experimental Details
(1) 3-minute animated video that encourages the viewer to talk to, sing to, and read to her babies, and to encourage family members to do so (2) Printed calendar with images and messages from the video (and information on how to watch the video again online)
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Children's language development
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Frequency/intensity/type of infant-directed speech that the mother and other family members engaged in.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
The study will enroll a subsample of respondents to the "Ghana Panel Survey" (PI: Christopher Udry). Specifically, the sample for this study will be the approximately 2000 women age 18 to 40 who speak one of the following languages: English, Asante, Akaupem, Fanti, Ewe, Dagbani, Kokomba, Wali/Dagari, Frafra/Gruni or Dangme. At most one woman will be sampled per household. 40% of participants will be assigned to the control group and 60% will be shown the video (more precisely, offered to be shown the video) during the 2018 survey visit for the Ghana Panel Survey. This treatment group will be subdivided in half; half will receive a calendar with images and messages from the video and information on where to access the video online.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
2000 enrolled. Note that the analysis sample will be restricted to those women who had an infant at baseline or gave birth between baseline and endline. (The outcome of child development is not relevant if the woman does not have any children at endline, for example.)
Sample size: planned number of observations
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
600 women in video + calendar arm
600 women in video only arm
800 women in control group
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB Name
University of Ghana
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
IRB Name
Northwestern University
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number