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Does active learning improve student performance? A randomized experiment in a Chilean university

Pilar Alcalde () and Juan Nagel

MPRA Paper from University Library of Munich, Germany

Abstract: We study the causal effect of an active learning teaching method on grades. We designed a randomized experiment with students at an undergraduate business and economics program in Chile. Two groups were taught by the same professor: the control group used traditional lectures, while the treatment group used an active learning method. Treated students failed the class less but the effect was not significant. They also had significantly better grades at the end and during the semester. The treatment effect was larger for males and students with high application scores. The effect does not appear instantaneously, and appears to fade away at the end of the semester. Results suggest students allocate effort differently across both groups, and this interacts with the treatment effect.

Keywords: Classroom experiments; course performance; peer instruction; innovation in teaching (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: A20 C21 C90 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2015-11-06
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe and nep-exp
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