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The effectiveness of an online mentoring programme on cognitive and non-cognitive skills in secondary school
Last registered on March 30, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
The effectiveness of an online mentoring programme on cognitive and non-cognitive skills in secondary school
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0007138
Initial registration date
March 29, 2021
Last updated
March 30, 2021 6:24 AM EDT
Location(s)

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Primary Investigator
Affiliation
CUNEF
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
World Bank
PI Affiliation
ESADE
Additional Trial Information
Status
In development
Start date
2021-03-16
End date
2022-02-05
Secondary IDs
Abstract
Evidence is mounting that there is a substantial socio-economic gap in learning losses experienced by students as a result of widespread school closures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This research evaluates the effectiveness of an online mentoring program aimed at students from highly disadvantaged schools in Spain. We will randomly assign students to mentors. Students will be taught in groups of two for a duration of eight weeks. We will evaluate the effect of the program both on cognitive as well as non-cognitive outcomes.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Citation
Gortazar, Lucas, Claudia Hupkau and Antonio Roldan. 2021. "The effectiveness of an online mentoring programme on cognitive and non-cognitive skills in secondary school." AEA RCT Registry. March 30. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.7138-1.0.
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
The intervention consists mentoring delivered online over the course of 8 weeks (3 hours per week) in groups of 2 students.
Intervention Start Date
2021-04-06
Intervention End Date
2021-06-05
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
We will study the impact of the intervention on cognitive as well as non-cognitive outcomes:
Cognitive outcomes are measured by scores using a standardized test that will be administered online during school hours. Non-cognitive outcomes will be measured via a self-completion survey to students covering socio-emotional skills, locus of control, aspirations, and wellbeing.


Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Test score on standardized exam: We have developed two exams (one for each year group participating). These are exams consisting of 6 to 7 questions with multiple choice answers. We will compute the score on the exam and standardize it within each year group.

Subjective wellbeing, aspirations, locus of control: We will construct indices of the aforementioned aspects using answers to several questions in each domain in the endline survey.
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Because students are assigned randmly to groups of 2 for their tutoring sessions (within the same classrooms or year group within school) we will further test whether (1) it matters to be matched with someone you consider your friend or not (2) whether the ability match matters (measured through baseline maths test and exam results) (3) whether the gender compisition of the group matters.

Due to the fact that we randomly assign mentors to students, we will study heterogeneous effects of the intervention with respect to mentor-student gender match.


Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
Due to limited financial resources to pay additional mentors and manage additional volunteer mentors, among all students who register interest for the program, only some students will be randmly assigned to a mentor.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by a computer.
Randomization Unit
The unit of randomization are individuals. Randomization will be blocked at the classroom or year group level (depending on the number of students registering per classroom in a given school).
Was the treatment clustered?
No
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
We have registered interest to participate by about 380 students from 18 schools. These 380 students will be randomly assigned to one of three treatment arms: 1) mentor and 2) control group (no mentoring).


Sample size: planned number of observations
We plan to have 380 pupils in our study.
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
The targeted sample size is 206 students for the treatment group, and 178 students in the control group.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
MDES for main outcomes: 29% of a standard deviation (standardized test score in maths)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
Research Ethics Committee (CER-URL)
IRB Approval Date
2021-03-11
IRB Approval Number
N/A