The impact of Computer Assisted Learning in Higher Education: evidence from an at scale experiment in Ecuador

Last registered on February 28, 2022


Trial Information

General Information

The impact of Computer Assisted Learning in Higher Education: evidence from an at scale experiment in Ecuador
Initial registration date
February 28, 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 28, 2022, 5:06 PM EST

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



Primary Investigator

World Bank

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
World Bank
PI Affiliation
World Bank

Additional Trial Information

On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Students often enroll in higher education lacking basic competencies and this is one of the most common reasons for student dropout. This is one of the first studies to evaluate the impact of personalized learning delivered through technology in the context of technical higher education in a developing country. We conduct an at scale cluster randomized experiment that involves 71 technical institutions in Ecuador to study whether the use of Assessment and Learning in Knowledge Spaces (ALEKS) during the first semester of higher education can improve short and medium terms outcomes. We evaluate the impact of the platform on student math knowledge during the first year of university, the probability of enrolling in the third semester and the probability of graduating.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Avitabile, Ciro, Marjorie Chinen and Diego Angel Urdinola. 2022. "The impact of Computer Assisted Learning in Higher Education: evidence from an at scale experiment in Ecuador." AEA RCT Registry. February 28.
Experimental Details


Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
student math knowledge; enrollment in the third semester of higher education; on-time higher education completion
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Student math knowledge will be measured through the test that students have to take in order to enroll in higher education “Examen de Acceso a la Educación Superior” (EAES). Enrollment in the third semester of higher education will be measured through administrative outcomes provided by Senecyt; on-time higher education will be measured through administrative outcomes

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Randomized cluster trial with 39 institutions assigned to the treatment group and 32 institutions to the control group
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
randomization done in office by a computer
Randomization Unit
institution (school) level
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
71 institutions
Sample size: planned number of observations
11,431 students
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
39 treatment
32 control
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number


Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Is the intervention completed?
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials