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ERIC Number: ED562185
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 20
Examining the Foundations of Methods That Assess Treatment Effect Heterogeneity across Intermediate Outcomes
Feller, Avi; Miratrix, Luke
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness
The goal of this study is to better understand how methods for estimating treatment effects of latent groups operate. In particular, the authors identify where violations of assumptions can lead to biased estimates, and explore how covariates can be critical in the estimation process. For each set of approaches, the authors first review the assumptions necessary for identification and discuss practical issues that arise in estimation; second, they then examine how covariates allow for improved estimation, and determine the conditions necessary for using covariates to identify causal effects in latent groups; and third, they then compare the different methods using simulation studies built from datasets constructed by imputing missing class membership and potential outcomes from real-world studies. This allows for examining the performance of the different techniques under a variety of plausible circumstances. Analyzed is data from the Job Search Intervention Study (JOBS II), a randomized evaluation of an intervention for unemployed workers consisting of a series of training sessions and also the Head Start Impact Study, a large-scale randomized evaluation of the Head Start program in which children randomized to treatment were offered a seat in a classroom in a Head Start program. The authors conclude that, in practice, randomized trials should attempt to collect such covariates by, for example, having expert assessment of likelihood of compliance collected at baseline and that for identification, many methods require assumptions that are quite strong.
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Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE)