NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Nolan G. Pope

University of Maryland
3114 Tydings Hall
7343 Preinkert Dr
College Park, MD 20742

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Institutional Affiliation: University of Maryland

NBER Working Papers and Publications

September 2018When Studying and Nudging Don’t Go as Planned: Unsuccessful Attempts to Help Traditional and Online College Students
with Philip Oreopoulos, Richard W. Patterson, Uros Petronijevic: w25036
We evaluate two low-cost college support programs designed to target insufficient study time, a common occurrence among many undergraduates. We experimentally evaluate the programs across three distinct colleges, randomly assigning more than 9,000 students to construct a weekly schedule in an online planning module and to receive weekly study reminders or coach consultation via text message. Despite high participation and engagement, and treated students at two sites marginally increasing study time, we estimate precise null effects on student credit accumulation, course grades, and retention at each site for the full sample and for multiple subgroups. The results and other supplemental evidence suggest that low-touch programs that offer scheduling assistance, encouragement, and reminders ...
 
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