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Monetary incentives and self-chosen goals in academic performance: An experimental study

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  • Herranz-Zarzoso, Noemí
  • Sabater-Grande, Gerardo

Abstract

This paper analyzes the effect of incentive-compatible self-chosen goals on academic performance by means of a randomized field experiment. We use two alternative payment mechanisms, a piece-rate and a rank-order tournament, to motivate students depending on their absolute or relative academic performance respectively. Students enrolled in Introductory Microeconomics were classified in two types depending on whether they had a failed background in this course (returning students) or they had not (new students). Controlling for potential confounding factors such as gender, degree, professor and university entrance grade, we find that both payment mechanisms are effective increasing grades of new and returning students.

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  • Herranz-Zarzoso, Noemí & Sabater-Grande, Gerardo, 2018. "Monetary incentives and self-chosen goals in academic performance: An experimental study," International Review of Economics Education, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 34-44.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ireced:v:27:y:2018:i:c:p:34-44
    DOI: 10.1016/j.iree.2018.02.002
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    1. Balafoutas, Loukas & Faravelli, Marco & Sheremeta, Roman, 2021. "Conflict in the Pool: A Field Experiment," MPRA Paper 109380, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Self-chosen grades; Monetary incentives; Academic performance; Piece-rate mechanism; Rank-order tournament;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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