Experimental Methods in Economics

The details
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 6
Thursday 03 October 2024
Friday 13 December 2024
19 June 2024


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BSC C814 Psychology with Economics,
BSC C815 Psychology with Economics (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C816 Psychology with Economics (Including Placement Year),
BSC C817 Psychology with Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BA C841 Economics with Psychology,
BA C851 Economics with Psychology (Including Year Abroad),
BA C861 Economics with Psychology (Including Placement Year),
BSC C148 Economics with Psychology,
BSC C149 Economics with Psychology (Including Foundation Year),
BSC C158 Economics with Psychology (Including Year Abroad),
BSC C168 Economics with Psychology (Including Placement Year)

Module description

Controlled experiments allow us to address questions that are difficult to answer with observational data. Laboratory experiments have deepened our understanding of individual choice behaviour (e.g., choice under risk), and interactive behaviour (e.g., competitive markets, cooperation games). Experiments enable tests of causal relationships, which has encouraged governments, firms and NGOs to conduct experiments in the field as well as the laboratory. Experimental economists often collaborate with researchers from other disciplines to develop novel methods and insights. This module will introduce students to the promises and challenges of economic experiments for generating knowledge and for analysing alternative policies.

Module aims

The aim of this module is:

  • To introduce students to experimental methods in economics with a focus on issues and principles of experimental design.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module, students will be expected to be able to:

  1. Critically evaluate the use of experimental methods in economics.

  2. Improve their presentation skills and their abilities to engage in critical discussion. 

Module information

The module structure is different from the traditional format. In weeks 2-4, lectures will be provided to introduce the material and assessments. There will also be an opportunity to take part in an experiment. From week 5, the module is held as a seminar, in which student groups will present and lead a discussion of an original research paper. Short mini-lectures throughout the course will provide supplementary material

Learning and teaching methods

The module will be delivered via:

  • Lectures/seminars: 20 hours

Lectures and seminars may use the Essex Lab as a tool.


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography for this year.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Presentation    35% 
Coursework   Class Participation    5% 
Coursework   Assignment    60% 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Daniel Friedman, email:
Dr Nikhil Masters, email:
Lectures: Dr Daniel Friedman & Dr Nikhil Masters
For further information please send an e-mail message to



External examiner

Dr Georgios Chrysanthou
University of Dundee
Lecturer in Economics (Teaching and Research)
Available via Moodle
Of 10 hours, 10 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.


Further information

* Please note: due to differing publication schedules, items marked with an asterisk (*) base their information upon the previous academic year.

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