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Turning a Shove into a Nudge? A "Labeled Cash Transfer" for Education

Benhassine N, Devoto F, Duflo E, Dupas P, Pouliquen V

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Conditional Cash Transfers (CCTs) have been shown to increase human capital investments, but their standard features make them expensive. We use a large randomized experiment in Morocco to estimate an alternative government-run program, a "labeled cash transfer" (LCT): a small cash transfer made to fathers of school-aged children in poor rural communities, not conditional on school attendance but explicitly labeled as an education support program. We document large gains in school participation. Adding conditionality and targeting mothers made almost no difference in our context. The program increased parents' belief that education was a worthwhile investment, a likely pathway for the results. (JEL H23, I24, 128, I38, J24, O15, O18)

 


Nudging study habits: A field experiment on peer tutoring in higher education

Pugatch T, Wilson N

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A randomized evaluation found that a one-time message increased attendance at peer tutoring sessions by 7 percentage points, from 29% to 36%. Attendance at multiple tutoring sessions increased by 6 percentage points, from 18% to 24%.

 


Keeping College Students in School: "You Belong"

ideas42

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To help first-year students understand that the challenges they faced were neither unique to them nor evidence of personal failure, all incoming first-year students at SF State were asked to watch a three-minute video in which older students described the struggles they had faced and their routes to success.

 


Beating the Deadline: Reminders to Apply for Financial Aid on Time

ideas42

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A randomized evaluation found that among families where both students and parents received the redesigned emails, 50% filed their financial aid application by the priority deadline.

 


Can an Email Make it Easier to Schedule Tutoring?

ideas42

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A randomized evaluation found that among students who were eligible to use the Tutoring Center, the redesigned emails sent to students increased their likelihood of attending tutoring by almost 2 percentage points, from 5.0% to 6.7%, and increased the overall number of tutoring sessions that were attended from 171 to 263.

 


The Underutilized Potential of Teacher-Parent Communication

ideas42

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Past research indicates there is a positive relationship between parental involvement and students' success in school, but communication between educators and parents is often infrequent or unsystematic.

 


Increasing Financial Aid Awards with Reminders

ideas42

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Students were instructed to download a smartphone app that, over a period of weeks, delivered timely reminders and simple instructions about important deadlines and upcoming tasks related to applying for financial aid.

 


Emails About Course Selection Increase Financial Aid

ideas42

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This randomized evaluation found that the average aid award for students receiving both redesigned emails rose by 2%, or $150.28 per student for the Spring semester, compared to students who received neither email ($6,368 vs. $6,217).

 


Can Referral Improve Targeting? Evidence from an Agricultural Training Experiment

Fafchamps M

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Farmers in Bangladesh received incentives to refer peers for agricultural training, in some cases contingent on the referred farmer adopting the innovation.

 


Loose Knots: Strong versus Weak Commitments to Save for Education in Uganda

Karlan D, Linden L

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A randomized evaluation found that some versions of the Super Savers program had a positive impact on savings and educational outcomes. Students saved more when they were offered the less restrictive cash payout which returned their savings in cash compared to the more restrictive voucher payout (see Figure 1).

 


Redesigned Emails Bolster Work-Study Applications

ideas42

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A randomized evaluation found that the redesigned emails increased the number of students applying for SEED jobs by 3 percentage points, from 9% to 12%.Additionally, there was a 56% increase in the number of applications submitted, from 304 to 475 applications.