Pricing of Private Education in Urban India: Demand, Use and Impact
Last registered on April 15, 2016


Trial Information
General Information
Pricing of Private Education in Urban India: Demand, Use and Impact
Initial registration date
July 07, 2015
Last updated
April 15, 2016 9:16 AM EDT
Primary Investigator
Cornell University
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
Cornell University
Additional Trial Information
On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
There is a large market for education services for children in the developing world, with many services being provided by private education service providers. Yet little is known about how prices influence demand and utilization of these services. This study explores this issue by examining demand for tutoring services among middle school children in India. Through a two-part pricing design, we investigate how prices influence the number and composition of those willing to take up the services, whether prices can induce more frequent attendance through a psychological effect, and whether treatment effects are heterogeneous by willingness to pay. In addition, given the gender differences prevalent in educational attainment in India, particularly among older children, we explore differential effects that pricing policy can have on children based on their age and gender.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Berry, James and Priya Mukherjee. 2016. "Pricing of Private Education in Urban India: Demand, Use and Impact." AEA RCT Registry. April 15.
Former Citation
Berry, James, James Berry and Priya Mukherjee. 2016. "Pricing of Private Education in Urban India: Demand, Use and Impact." AEA RCT Registry. April 15.
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Experimental Details
The sample consists of students in grades 6-8 in the 2014-2015 school year. The two subsamples are children enrolled in Pratham tuitions in 2013-2014, and "new" students whose households are in the vicinity of each tuition center.

Tuition services are offered to each household at randomized prices. In 6th grade, the prices are randomized across Rs. 0, Rs. 75, Rs, 150, and Rs. 200 (the posted price). In 7th and 8th grades, the prices are randomized across Rs. 0, Rs. 75, Rs, 150, and Rs. 250 (the posted price). Households receive a voucher corresponding to their price, effective from the time of offer through March 2015.

Conditional on enrollment, a second price offer (equal to or lower than the first price) is made at households, effective until March 2015.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Child attendance is tracked in the classes from the time of offer through March 2015. The key outcomes of interest are takeup (enrollment), attendance in the classes, and child test scores math and English test scores. We also track attendance in the 2015-2016 school year, when all prices revert to the posted price.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Attendance is measured using administrative records taken in the Pratham tuition centers. These records have been verified through unannounced checks by enumerators. We will utilize both the intensive margin (take-up) and extensive margin (amount of classes attended).
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
The core features of the experimental set-up are described above. In addition to administrative attendance records, data collection consists of baseline household surveys and child english and math tests conducted at the time of the first offer, and endline surveys and tests conducted upon completion of the 2014-2015 school year.

Experimental Design Details
We note that because we expect different willingness to pay, attendance, and impacts for previously enrolled children compared with newly enrolled children, we will run the analysis both pooled with all children and separately by previous enrollment status. We also plan to analyze heterogeneity by gender and grade, as well as household wealth, parental education, and prior enrollment in other tuitions.

The analysis will consist of five distinct parts.

First, we will analyze the determinants of demand for tuitions based on the randomized first price.
Second, we will analyze correlates of willingness to pay based on observable characteristics measured through testing and household surveys
Third, we will measure how attendance varies by willingness to pay, as determined by response to the first price offer.
Fourth, we will measure how attendance varies by price paid, as determined by response to the second price offer.
Fifth, we will measure treatment effects of the classes and heterogeneity in treatment effects by willingness to pay.
Randomization Method
The first-price randomization done on computer for existing households, and using a draw from a bag of randomly-sorted scratch cards for new households. Second-price randomization done on computer.
Randomization Unit
Individual (child) level
Was the treatment clustered?
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
Not applicable
Sample size: planned number of observations
4400 students, 1760 enrollees
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
First price offer
Rs. 0: 1100
Rs. 75: 1100
Rs. 150: 1100
Rs. 200/250: 1100

Second price offer
Rs. 0: 1094
Rs. 75: 434
Rs. 150: 177
Rs. 200/250: 55
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB Name
Cornell University Institutional Review Board - Human Participants (Office of Research Integrity and Assurance)
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
IRB Name
IFMR Human Subjects Committee
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
IRB00007107; FWA00014616; IORG0005894
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, Papers & Other Materials
Relevant Paper(s)