Effect of Self-Control on Students’ Investment in Human Capital Accumulation
Last registered on May 13, 2019

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
Effect of Self-Control on Students’ Investment in Human Capital Accumulation
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0004117
Initial registration date
April 18, 2019
Last updated
May 13, 2019 11:37 PM EDT
Location(s)
Region
Primary Investigator
Affiliation
The University of Queensland
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
University of Pittsburgh
PI Affiliation
University Technology Sydney
Additional Trial Information
Status
On going
Start date
2019-04-18
End date
2019-05-18
Secondary IDs
Abstract
We investigate the mismatch between the skills that employers demand and the ones that workers have in the Saudi Arabia labor market. This mismatch is especially emphasized in soft skills. This study will investigate two behavioral factors as possible barriers to invest in soft skills for university students. One factor is the lack of information about the importance of these soft skills. The second factor is the lack of these soft skills, because investing in these skills is often non-mandatory and is left at the discretion of students. To investigate these channels we will use standard experimental methods as well as survey methods and measure students' soft skills. We will randomly provide students with the results of a survey about the most important soft skills in the workplace and we will examine the effect of the information intervention on investment in soft skills and academic outcomes. We will also measure participants' perceptions about labor market and motherhood-related issues.
Registration Citation
Citation
Incekara Hafalir, Elif , Rigissa Megalokonomou and Stephanie Wang. 2019. "Effect of Self-Control on Students’ Investment in Human Capital Accumulation." AEA RCT Registry. May 13. https://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/4117/history/46398
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Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
The mismatch in soft skills that employers demand and the ones that workers have is one of the identified market failures in the Saudi Arabia labor market. We plan to use standard experimental methods as well as survey methods to measure self control for university students enrolled in Saudi Arabia. To investigate whether students are misinformed about the importance of soft skills in the job market we will do the following intervention. We are planning to do a randomized controlled trial with a control and a treatment group. In particular, we are going to randomly provide some participants with information about the importance of soft skills in the job market. In particular, this group will receive information about the results of a survey of private-sector employers regarding the most important skills in female job-seekers (Domash, 2017). Only some random participants will receive this information. Participants in the control group will no receive such information. This group is our key comparison group for determining the effects of the intervention. We will then examine the effect of the information intervention on outcomes by comparing participants who received the information treatment to those who are in the control group and thus did not receive any information. We are also planning to measure participants' perceptions about labor market and motherhood related issues, that could potentially explain the underinvestment in soft skills. To do this we plan to measure the difference between what participants privately believe about statements related to females’ participation in the labor market and motherhood, and their perceptions of what others believe about the same topic.
Intervention Start Date
2019-04-18
Intervention End Date
2019-05-18
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Our dependent variable will be students’ academic performance and labor market outcomes
(self-reported and actual measures). Students academic achievements will be obtained from the university records (i.e., attendance, GPA, attendance in training programs). We ideally plan
to use as labor market outcomes participants’ activity in a job portal, interaction with the career
development office, self-reported time spent doing specific activities (in hours), information
about the number of job applications submitted, the type of jobs applied for, the employment status outside home as well as their expectations and aspirations about their job market participation at different ages.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
We are planning to do a randomized controlled trial with a control and a treatment group. We are going to randomly provide some participants with information about the importance of soft skills in the job market. In particular, this group will receive information about the most important skills in female job-seekers. Only some random participants will receive this information. Participants in the control group will no receive such information. This group is our key comparison group for determining the effects of the intervention. We will then examine the effect of the information intervention on outcomes by comparing participants who received the information treatment to those who are in the control group and thus did not receive any information.

We also plan to use standard experimental methods as well as survey methods to measure self control for university students in Saudi Arabia. Each self-control survey will take about 20-30mins to complete and we will conduct the survey through Qualtrics online survey platform.

Experimental Design Details
We plan to use standard experimental methods as well as survey methods to measure self control for senior students enrolled in Effat University (only female students). We will give them self-control measurement questions. Each self-control survey will take about 20-30mins to complete and we will conduct the survey through Qualtrics online survey platform. The universities will send the recruitment emails to their students. Once the survey is completed, we will provide the data with student ID numbers to our partner universities and they will match the survey data with the student data for us. Finally, we will be provided and work with the anonymous matched data.
Randomization Method
Randomization will be done by the computer.
Randomization Unit
The unit of randomization is the university student.
Was the treatment clustered?
No
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
No clusters apply here. The survey will be provided to female students in a specific university.
Sample size: planned number of observations
We keep the survey open until we reach 200 participants for the trial or a specific time date that we have set (May 18, 2019).
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Does not apply in this case.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
UTS IRB
IRB Approval Date
2018-03-14
IRB Approval Number
ETH18‐2195
Analysis Plan

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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 and Papers
Preliminary Reports
Relevant Papers