Institution for Social and Policy Studies

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Does Knowledge of Constitutional Principles Increase Support for Civil Liberties? Results from a Randomized Field Experiment

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Green, Donald P., Peter M. Aronow, Daniel E. Bergan, Pamela Greene, Celia Paris, Beth I. Weinberger

Research design: 
Data type: 
Data source(s): 


Field date: 
June 1, 2007
Unit of observation: 
Sample size: 
Our experiment involves roughly one thousand high school students, fifty-nine classrooms, and ten public schools of widely varying socio-economic characteristics
A diverse array of schools in an eastern state participated in this study. These schools represent a broad spectrum of secondary educational settings ranging from urban to suburban to rural-regional. They include both traditional public high schools and public vocational-technical schools.
Randomization procedure: 
In each high school, we randomly assigned students to exposure to a BRRL-enhanced civics course or to a control group in which civics was taught in its usual manner. We employed one of three different randomization procedures so that we could match teachers’ needs with the requirements of the study: (1) a teacher teaching more than one civics class or section allowed us to randomly assign at least one class to the treatment group and at least one to the control group: (2) a teacher willing to teach either all classes as treatment classes or all classes as control classes allowed us to randomly pick which experimental group the teacher would be assigned to; or (3) students were assigned by their school’s registrar to one civics class or another in a manner that was effectively random.
Teachers presented all 21 BRRL lessons as a supplement to their civics curriculum. Teachers in control classes were given no instruction as to course content or curricular guidelines for those classes, other than to not use lessons or materials from the BRRL curriculum.
Treatment administration: 
BRRL lessons
Outcome measures: 
Political knowledge, civil liberties knoweldge, and support for civil liberties
Archive date: 
Archive contributor: 
Limor Peer
Owner contact: 


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Data file numbersort descending Description File format Size File url
D035F01 Dataset - main Stata (10.0) .dta 229376 Download file
D035F02 Dataset - main Excel .csv 259072 Download file
D035F03 Dataset - Survey E Stata (10.0) .dta 69529 Download file
D035F04 Dataset - Survey E Excel .csv 48742 Download file
D035F05 Program file Stata (10.0) .do 21504 Download file
D035F06 Program file R (2.9.1.) .R 33792 Download file
D035F07 Codebook XML (1.1) .xml 210944 Download file
D035F08 Codebook XML (1.1) .xml 151552 Download file
D035F09 Supplementary - SurveyA code Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 10127 Download file
D035F10 Supplementary - SurveyB code Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 109568 Download file
D035F11 Supplementary - SurveyC code Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 12595 Download file
D035F12 Supplementary - SurveyD code Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 103424 Download file
D035F13 Supplementary - SurveyA pre Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 30720 Download file
D035F14 Supplementary - SurveyB post Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 35840 Download file
D035F15 Supplementary - SurveyC followup Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 47104 Download file
D035F16 Supplementary - SurveyD v1 Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 61440 Download file
D035F17 Supplementary - SurveyD v2 Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 61440 Download file
D035F18 Supplementary - Survey E Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 76800 Download file
D035F19 Metadata record Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 230400 Download file
D035F20 Supplementary - Online Appendix Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 273408 Download file
D035F21 Supplementary - Mini Appendix Adobe Acrobat (8.1) .pdf 105472 Download file