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Randomized Experiments in Education: Assessing the Objections to Doing Them

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This article analyzes a variety of reasons that are offered within the community of educational researchers to explain why so few randomized controlled trials (RCTs) have been undertaken. The article suggests strategies for dealing with most of these objections. However, some of these objections are serious enough, and the remedies sufficiently incomplete, that it is difficult to call RCTs the 'gold standard' of causal inference in the educational sector.

Keywords: Causal inference; Educational research; Random assignment

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, USA

Publication date: 2007-07-01

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