Understanding the role of peer pressure in shaping students educational investments

Last registered on February 12, 2014

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Understanding the role of peer pressure in shaping students educational investments
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0000060
Initial registration date
Not yet registered
Last updated
February 12, 2014, 5:16 PM EST

Locations

Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
University of Pennsylvania

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
UCLA

Additional Trial Information

Status
In development
Start date
2012-10-01
End date
2014-09-30
Secondary IDs
Abstract
This paper uses a field experiment conducted in high schools from the Los Angeles Unified School District to understand the nature of social costs students face when they make decisions on educational investments.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
, and Robert Jensen. 2014. "Understanding the role of peer pressure in shaping students educational investments." AEA RCT Registry. February 12. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.60-1.0
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2014-01-15
Intervention End Date
2014-03-01

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Take up rates of the offer of free SAT prep courses.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We will provide students with forms that ask them whether they would like to sign up for a free, online SAT prep course.
Experimental Design Details
We will provide students with forms that ask them whether they would like to sign up for a free, online SAT prep course. We will randomly vary (among students within classrooms) whether the form states that the information will be kept completely private from everyone, including their classmates. The forms will be identical other than this final disclaimer. The more explicit, greater assurance of privacy from classmates regarding the decision to enroll in the test prep course is proposed to reduce the level of social stigma involved in enrollment and thus increase take up (note however, in none of the cases will we make sign up decisions public--we simply vary the extent to which privacy from classmates is emphasized).

We will also stratify by honors vs. non-honors classes. Our model suggests that different norms may take hold in the two kinds of classes, with stigma greater in non-honors classes, thus a greater effect of information being kept private.

We will also collect data on self-reported attributes such as grades and time preferences, where we expect students who do better to face less of a stigma, students who discount the future more to be more concerned with stigma, as will students who care more about popularity.
Randomization Method
The differing sign up forms will be shuffled and distributed to students in the order they sit in the room.
Randomization Unit
Students, within classrooms (and stratified for honors vs. non-honors classes)
Was the treatment clustered?
Yes

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
4 schools, approximately 20 classrooms
Sample size: planned number of observations
1,000 (approximate, since classroom sizes will vary)
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Approximately 500 treatment, 500 control (approximate since classroom sizes will vary)
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
UCLA Office of the Human Research Protection Program
IRB Approval Date
2013-09-30
IRB Approval Number
13-001347

Post-Trial

Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Intervention

Is the intervention completed?
No
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?
No

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials