Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center Sibling Study

Last registered on April 06, 2020


Trial Information

General Information

Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center Sibling Study
Initial registration date
April 03, 2020

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
April 06, 2020, 1:42 PM EDT

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.


Primary Investigator

University of Southern California

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Michigan State University
PI Affiliation
University of Chicago

Additional Trial Information

On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Research has shown that giving disadvantaged families financial incentives to invest in their children could decrease socioeconomic inequality by enhancing human capital formation. Yet, within the household how are such gains achieved? We use a field experiment to investigate how parents allocate time when they receive financial incentives. We measure parental investment using the time parents report spending with each child in the family. We aim to determine whether financial incentives increase investment in target children, potentially at the expense of time spent with non-targeted children.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Chuan, Amanda, John List and Anya Samek. 2020. "Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center Sibling Study." AEA RCT Registry. April 06.
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Experimental Details


Our study involves the Parent Academy treatment arm of the Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center (CHECC). Families in Chicago Heights will be randomly assigned to Parent Academy, which will hold classes to help parents teach to their preschool-aged child. Parents will be assigned homework to complete with their preschool-aged child, complete evaluations with their preschool-aged child in the presence of trained staff, and take their child to assessments held at CHECC. Some parents will receive financial incentives paid to them immediately in cash, while other parents will receive financial incentives deposited to a savings account that they can only access when their target child is ready to enroll in post-secondary education.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
We will focus on the amount of time parents spend investing in the target child compared to non-targeted siblings. This time is primarily time spent teaching.
We will also use performance in Parent Academy as a measure of parental investment. Parents are required to complete homework with the target child, which is a form of time investment. We will take variation in target child's performance on evaluations and assessments (controlling for baseline academic performance) as another measure of parental investment.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
In both conditions, parents will have access to Parent Academy. Parent Academy provides parenting classes, homework assignments for the parent and target child, evaluations for both the parent and target child, and assessments for the target child. The parenting classes and homework are designed to improve the skills of target children, provided the parent invests time in these activities. The evaluations and assessments are designed to measure target child skills. For all four activities, parents receive financial incentives.
For attending parenting classes, parents will receive earnings in cash. For homework assignments, evaluations, and assessments, only parents in the immediate condition will receive earnings in cash. Parents in the delayed condition will have their earnings deposited into a bank account that is only accessible when the target child enrolls in post-secondary school.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
public lottery
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
150-200 families per year
Sample size: planned number of observations
300-400 families
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
150-200 families in the immediate condition; 150-200 families in the delayed condition
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
University of Chicago Social and Behavioral Sciences Institutional Review Board
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number