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Stigma Against Community College Graduates in the Labor Market
Last registered on October 17, 2019


Trial Information
General Information
Stigma Against Community College Graduates in the Labor Market
Initial registration date
September 11, 2019
Last updated
October 17, 2019 9:53 AM EDT
Primary Investigator
Yale University
Other Primary Investigator(s)
Additional Trial Information
On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
This study examines whether receiving an associate's degree from a community college harms a graduate's labor market prospect, conditional on the graduate also having received a bachelor's degree. Furthermore, if we detect any such effect on labor market outcomes, this study examines whether the effect is due to statistical discrimination or due to pure stigma against community college graduates.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Zhu, Zhengren. 2019. "Stigma Against Community College Graduates in the Labor Market." AEA RCT Registry. October 17. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.4702-1.1.
Experimental Details
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Call back rate.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Call back is defined as a personal email or voicemail from an employer indicating an interest to invite the job applicant for an interview or an interest in knowing more information about the applicant.
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Employer's quality.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Employer's quality is defined by a unified scale that would be further disclosed once the trial ends.
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
The study team send out artificial resumes through an online job search platform.
Experimental Design Details
The study send out artificial resumes through one of the largest online job search platform in the US. We use a total of 600+ artificial application resumes, and apply to jobs across the entire country in two occupations: accounting and sales. We subdivide the resumes into 8 groups defined by the occupation the resumes are designed for and the geographic location of the job applicants (West Coast, South, Midwest, and Northeast). Within each occupation-geography group, there are eight different types of resumes: selective 4-year 3.2 gpa, non-selective 4-year 3.2 gpa, community college + selective 4-year 3.2 gpa, community college + selective 4-year 3.4 gpa, community college + selective 4-year 3.6 gpa, community college + non-selective 4-year 3.2 gpa, community college + non-selective 4-year 3.4 gpa, community college + non-selective 4-year 3.6 gpa. The rest of the resumes, including relevant courses, employment experiences, and skills were randomized across the eight resumes. The names of the applicants were deliberately selected to indicate a Caucasian individual, and gender was evenly split.
Randomization Method
Randomization was done in office with random number generator.
Randomization Unit
Randomization unit is each of the 600+ individual resumes.
Was the treatment clustered?
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
600+ resumes.
Sample size: planned number of observations
3000~5000 job applications.
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Each of the eight treatment arms (sel 4yr 3.2, no-sel 4yr 3.2, cc-sel 4yr 3.2, etc.) will have equal numbers of job applications.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB Name
Yale University Institutional Review Board
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Analysis Plan

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Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Is the intervention completed?
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
Program Files
Program Files
Reports and Papers
Preliminary Reports
Relevant Papers