App-Based Mindfulness Meditation

Last registered on August 06, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
App-Based Mindfulness Meditation
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0007876
Initial registration date
June 25, 2021
Last updated
August 06, 2021, 5:11 PM EDT

Locations

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Primary Investigator

Affiliation
MIT

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
MIT

Additional Trial Information

Status
In development
Start date
2021-07-05
End date
2022-04-01
Secondary IDs
Abstract
Many Americans, in particular low-income individuals, suffer from common mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety at one point in their lives without receiving any treatment. Besides direct consequences of mental illnesses on well-being, even moderate amounts of anxiety may further amplify other health problems as well as poverty by impairing decision-making. We conduct an RCT with US adults recruited online, to test the effects of giving people access to and incentives to use a leading mindfulness meditation app. We will (a) evaluate the effects of meditation practice on mental health, (b) study take-up and the formation of meditation habits lasting beyond the incentives period, and (c) analyze effects of meditation on decision-making, in particular on the propensity to avoid useful but worrying health-relevant information.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Shreekumar, Advik and Pierre-Luc Vautrey. 2021. "App-Based Mindfulness Meditation." AEA RCT Registry. August 06. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.7876-2.1
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2021-07-10
Intervention End Date
2021-10-15

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Mental health: anxiety and depression measured with GAD-7 and PHQ-9
Decision-making: ability to focus on the most relevant information, and to avoid being influenced by emotions unrelated to the decision at hand
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Treatment: receive premium license to meditation app right away
Control: waitlist to receive the license later

Sub-arms in Treatment:
Incentive treatment arms, different incentives schemes tied to app usage
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization done in Qualtrics
Randomization Unit
Individual
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
4,000 individuals subject to availability of app licenses from partner
Sample size: planned number of observations
4,000 individuals subject to availability of app licenses from partner
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
2400 treatment, 1600 control, subject to availability of app licenses from partner
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
MIT Committee for the Use of Human as Experimental Subjects
IRB Approval Date
2020-09-28
IRB Approval Number
2008000210
Analysis Plan

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