New workshop on field experiments

We’re pleased to announce a new workshop in our schedule: Introduction to experimental methods in the social & behavioral sciences (May 3rd, 12-4 PM EST, $175) http://www.percontor.org/upcoming-workshop/experimental-methods-social-behavioral-sciences/ During the past decade, experiments in the social and behavioral sciences have gained in popularity as the internet has made implementing experiments easier, cheaper, and faster.  However, although…

How editors should deal with referees – an experiment

As someone who serves on four ed boards, I found this presentation very interesting: How can We Increase Pro-Social Behavior? An Experiment with Referees at the Journal of Public Economics Referees randomized to one of four groups in invitation emails: 1. 6 week – 6 week deadline [control group] 2. Social – 6 week deadline…

“Closing the social class achievement gap” paper

A colleague at NCSU asked my opinion of this paper, which tests the effect of a diversity education intervention on GPA. In general, the paper is quite detailed and the analysis carefully done. But the authors find that their intervention has quite an impact: This main effect was qualified, however, by the predicted interaction of…

Faculty discrimination against females and minority students

Mike Bastedo sent this to me; it’s a field experiment looking at how faculty respond to email requests from prospective doctoral students of different races and gender. Their Figure 2 is pretty amazing; I would not have guessed the differential was so large within the field of education (although note the size of the standard…

Good quote about RCTs

“In other words, discovering program improvements that really work is extremely hard. We labor in the dark — scratching and clawing for tiny scraps of causal insight.” On Megan McArdle’s blog.