A Behavioral Intervention Through Social Media to Motivate Career Choices

Last registered on February 24, 2022

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
A Behavioral Intervention Through Social Media to Motivate Career Choices
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0008999
Initial registration date
February 23, 2022

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
February 24, 2022, 1:47 PM EST

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

Locations

Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
Sao Paulo School of Economics - FGV

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Inter-American Development Bank
PI Affiliation
Inter-American Development Bank

Additional Trial Information

Status
On going
Start date
2021-09-01
End date
2022-03-31
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Abstract
Qualified teachers are a fundamental input for any education system. This paper presents the results of a large-scale intervention to attract high performing high-school students into the teaching profession in Chile. The intervention was a five-arm campaign delivered through social media (Instagram/Facebook, Google Search, Youtube), which made salient three types of motivations: intrinsic/altruistic, extrinsic, and prestige-related. In addition, we sent specific messages to two groups of students based on their career interest (STEM or non STEM) in order to persuade them to follow a related pedagogy. The messages were designed by an NGO focused on promoting teaching careers and were delivered during 4 weeks right before students' application to higher education. We measure two types of outcomes: application to majors in education and enrollment to those types of majors.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Ajzenman, Nicolas, Gregory Elacqua and Graciela Perez. 2022. "A Behavioral Intervention Through Social Media to Motivate Career Choices." AEA RCT Registry. February 24. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.8999
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
The intervention consisted in a campaign conducted through social media to high-school students in the last year, before they apply to college degrees. The goal was to increase their motivation to pursue a degree in education. The intervention was delivered through three platforms at the individual level: Instagram/Facebook, Youtube, and Google Search. There were nine arms: five treatment arms, two pure controls and one placebo. The pure controls did not receive any message, while the other arms received messages that were identical in structure but different in content. The intrinsic/altruism arm emphasized content related to how teachers can make a difference in the world. The extrinsic emphasized content related to the fact that teachers have good conditions, low unemployment rate, a good salary. The prestige arm emphasized content related to how much teachers are respected in the society. The placebo delivered neutral messages.

Individuals received between 3-5 adds in each social platform over 4 weeks.

The timeline of the campaign is the following: December 13th, 2021 to January 16th, 2022. Students submitted their choices between January 11 and January 16.


Data will be available between March and July, 2022
Intervention Start Date
2021-09-01
Intervention End Date
2022-03-31

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Ranked an education major as the first option: takes a one if the student ranked a major in education as the first preference of degree she/he wants to pursue.

The proportion of education majors included in the choice set: proportion of options that are majors in education out of the total of degree options selected by the student.

Applied to at least one education major: takes a one if the student applied to at least one major in education in her/his set.


All outcomes are real-world, high-stakes choices.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
This experiment was carried out with approximately 95,500 high-school students in their final year who declared on a survey conducted by Elige Educar (an NGO) that they might be interested in pursuing a career in teaching or in social sciences. Students were randomly assigned to one of the five arms, stratifying by gender, geographic region, and type of school they attended (public, private subsidized, and private non-subsidized).

The content of the messages delivered by each treatment arm was designed to be as similar as possible in structure. The messages are intended to motivate students to pursue a degree in education by appealing to three types of potential motivations: intrinsic related to altruism (related to how teachers can make a difference in the world), extrinsic (teachers have good conditions, low unemployment rate, a good salary) and prestige (teachers are respected in the society). The difference between these treatment arms is the content.

The pure control group does not receive any message, while the placebo receives neutral messages.

The sample is composed of high-school students that reported to have some interest in pursuing a career in education.

The timeline of the campaign is the following: December 13th, 2021 to January 16th, 2022.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done in an office by a computer
Randomization Unit
Students (no clusters)
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
95,592 students
Sample size: planned number of observations
135,594 students
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Individual randomization, no clustering

Extrinsic: 23,898 students
Prestige: 23,898 students
Intrinsic/Altruism: 23,898 students
Placebo: 11,950 students
Control:11,950 students
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
With a sample size of 35,000 students (one treatment arm versus control) we would be able to identify a MDE of 2.00 pp (primary outcome, baseline 9pp) with a power of 80% and 95% of confidence.
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number

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