Using field experiments to change the template of how we teach economics

John A. List

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


In this article, the author explains why field experiments can improve what we teach and how we teach economics. Economists no longer operate as passive observers of economic phenomena. Instead, they participate actively in the research process by collecting data from field experiments to investigate the economics of everyday life. This change can be shown to students by presenting them with evidence from field experiments. Field experiments related to factor markets, behavioral economics, and discrimination are presented to explain how this approach works across different economic content. The three questions that are highlighted are the following: (1)Why do women get paid less than men in labor markets (2) How can we use behavioral economics to motivate teachers (3) What seven words can end third-degree price discrimination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-89
Number of pages9
JournalThe Journal of Economic Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Economics textbooks
  • Field experiments
  • Undergraduate teaching

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