A reaction on the experimental methodology implemented in the readings. Please refer to the guide to evaluate Experiments. Please note that these assignments are not a summary of the readings. They are meant for you to react on the reading and be critical, your reactions may even propose alternatives to those in the material and raise further questions.
400-500 word critical review of experimental methodology implemented in the attached reading.
The goal of this assignment is for student to develop a critical eye of the experimental methodology in the social sciences. Learning to read academic articles is an important skill that will help you throughout your studies. From my perspective, this is not only comprehending the material but actually being able to assess its strength and weaknesses.
Your short essay should include:
- An explanation of the social or economic phenomena that the experiment is studying. Typically, the experiments we will read are motivated by real world examples or situations that the researchers aim to understand. Can you think of other applications or settings that apply?
- How close is the experimental design to the phenomena it studies? What features of reality are lacking? Do you believe the results have external validity (i.e. are relevant for informing us about behavior outside the laboratory)? What would be the drawbacks of making the experiment â€œmore realisticâ€?
- Incentives and behavior. Are subjects properly incentivized? Can their behavior be affected by other uncontrolled factors? (Think about social desirability or experimenter demand effects.)
- How would you tweak the experiment or change the design? Is there some other question that you think would be interesting to address?