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Nudging Technology Use: Descriptive and Experimental Evidence from School Information Systems

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  • Peter Bergman

    (Teachers College Columbia University New York, NY 10027-6696)

Abstract

As schools are making significant investments in education technologies it is important to assess whether various products are adopted by their end users and whether they are effective as used. This paper studies the adoption and ability to promote usage of one type of technology that is increasingly ubiquitous: school-to-parent communication technologies. Analyzing usage data from a Learning Management System across several hundred schools and then conducting a two-stage experiment across fifty-nine schools to nudge the use of this technology by families, I find that 57 percent of families ever use it, and adoption correlates strongly with measures of income and student achievement. Although a simple nudge increases usage and modestly improves student achievement, without more significant intervention to encourage usage by disadvantaged families, these technologies may exacerbate gaps in information access across income and performance levels.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Bergman, 2020. "Nudging Technology Use: Descriptive and Experimental Evidence from School Information Systems," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 15(4), pages 623-647, Fall.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:edfpol:v:15:y:2020:i:4:p:623-647
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