Cappelen, Alexander W. Charness, Gary Ekström, Mathias Gneezy, Uri Tungodden, Bertil
Year of Publication:
IFN Working Paper No. 1180
We report the results of a randomized controlled trial testing whether incentivizing physical exercise improves the academic performance of college students. As expected, the intervention increases physical activity. The main result is that it generates a strong and significant improvement in academic performance, particularly for students who struggled at the baseline in terms of lifestyle habits. We also provide evidence on the underlying mechanisms: Students who were incentivized to exercise have a healthier life style and improved self-control. Overall, the study demonstrates that incentivizing students to exercise can be an important tool in improving educational achievements.
Economics of education Human capital formation Behavior change Field experiment