Economic education research has taught us a lot over the years about pedagogy and student learning, but most of what we know comes from studies and experiments run at single institutions in classes usually taught by just one or two instructors. These studies have two big weaknesses: low precision and limited generalizability. We believe we have an opportunity to address both of these and make a big leap forward in research productivity.
The Economic Education Network for Experiments (EENE) is a new collaboration of instructors around the world that cooperate to run synchronized studies in their classrooms. We will tackle important research questions, come to agreement about study protocols, implement treatments, collect comparable data, and pool our samples. These pooled samples will be big enough to give us precise estimates, and because we have a wide range of courses, institutions, and students, we will be able to generalize our results. In turn, these results will help us all improve our teaching, increase student learning, address equity issues in our classrooms, and potentially increase diversity in our profession.
We would love for you to participate! There are two ways you can help. First, we need a list of committed (or at least interested) participants. We need representatives from big schools and small schools who teach big classes and small classes, so everyone is welcome! Second, we plan to show that this concept will work by fielding a relatively straight-forward observational study starting in Spring 2024. It will only require that participating instructors respond to a short survey and field a student survey about academic mindset at the beginning and end of the term in their course(s). Analyzing this data will tell us a lot about how student mindset changes during the term and how instructor/course/institution characteristics might influence this evolution.
As many of you already know, we will likely need IRB approval at your institutions, but we will help you through this process as best we can. These processes are slightly (or more) different at each organization, but we will share protocols that have been successful and help answer questions and address issues the IRBs will inevitably raise. We commit to include any participating instructors with local IRB approval as co-authors on papers that result from EENE projects.
If you want to be part of EENE, please fill out our interested instructor survey. Feel free to email us with any questions you might have, and please do spread the word to any other economics instructors that you think might be interested.
We hope you will join us!