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Visual values affirmation to increase student testing performance
Last registered on June 17, 2018


Trial Information
General Information
Visual values affirmation to increase student testing performance
Initial registration date
June 13, 2018
Last updated
June 17, 2018 7:27 PM EDT
Primary Investigator
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
American University of Beirut
PI Affiliation
Nudge Lebanon
Additional Trial Information
On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Directing students’ attention to the aspects of their life that they value can serve as a buffer against the activation of stereotype threat and anxiety in schooling. As a result, values affirmation exercises have been shown to result in improvements in academic performance. This positive effect may be particularly powerful when done before tests that are diagnostic and might confirm or disconfirm a stereotype about a groups’ performance. This study will evaluate if students of an accelerated youth literacy and numeracy program achieve higher scores on a test of their numeracy, Arabic, and English skills after completing a values affirmation task using drawing. The study will recruit participants of an accelerated education program in Lebanon between the ages of 14 and 24. Participants will be randomly assigned to either a values affirmation activity or a placebo activity of drawing a depiction of their morning routine.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Makki, Fadi, Nour Mohanna and Daniel Shephard. 2018. "Visual values affirmation to increase student testing performance." AEA RCT Registry. June 17. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.3081-1.0.
Former Citation
Makki, Fadi et al. 2018. "Visual values affirmation to increase student testing performance." AEA RCT Registry. June 17. http://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/3081/history/30859.
Experimental Details
A values affirmation task using drawing in which participants rank their values in order of the values' importance to them and then are asked to draw their highest ranked value.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
1. Increase in the students score on the (a) math, (b) Arabic, and (c) English portions of the exam (compared to the placement test).
2. Raw level (simple difference) of exam scores in (a) math, (b) Arabic, and (c) English.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
The exams will be scored in the normal manner and the change will be determined by comparing to the baseline (entrance) exam score for the same students. Each of the 3 tests will be graded and analyzed separately.
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
Individuals were randomized using a pre-determined randomized sequence that was stratified by the 7 educational center locations. Randomization was conducted using the randomizr v0.12.0 package in R.
Experimental Design Details
Stratified randomized sequences were generated for the locations of Kamed Loz, Machgara, Hara Hreik, Chayah, Hay Solom, Tyre, and Bazouyreh. Students with consent forms then lined up at each center to receive their activity and room assignment. Those assigned to the intervention received the values affirmation activity and were assigned to one room while those assigned to the control group were given the placebo activity and assigned to the control room. This randomization was done under the supervision of one or more research team members to ensure that the sequence was followed and that only individuals with consent forms entered the trial.
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by computer beforehand.
Randomization Unit
Individual stratified by location.
Was the treatment clustered?
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
Sample size: planned number of observations
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
60 treatment and 60 control individuals.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
The study estimates a minimum detectable effect size of 0.32 standard deviations assuming an alpha of 0. 10, a beta of 0.20, and using a standardized effect size (sigma = 1.0).
IRB Name
American University of Beirut Institutional Review Board
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Analysis Plan

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Study Withdrawal
Is the intervention completed?
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
Program Files
Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials
Relevant Paper(s)