Hi, you are logged in as , if you are not , please click here
You are shopping as , if this is not your email, please click here

C-BEAR Summer School - Introduction to Experimental Methods in Social Sciences


Course Information


This five-day workshop introduces participants to the theory and practice of experimental methods in Social Sciences. It delivers an overview of prevalent approaches, specifically lab, field, and survey experiments, providing a solid introduction to experimental methodology and the practical skills to design, implement, analyse, and present experiments. 

The target audience of the course are professionals and researchers, especially those approaching experimental methods for the first time. The course does not require any previous knowledge of experimental design or statistics and is open to participants with basic secondary school knowledge of mathematics. Prospective participants with some prior knowledge of experimental methods that would like to deepen their knowledge and skills on one specific approach (lab, field, or survey), can selectively sign up for sessions across the three days covering those approaches. 

The workshop objective is to teach participants to become critical readers of the experimental literature, and to equip them with the ability to design, implement, analyse, and report their first experiment. 

The workshop will also briefly overview service providers for marketing experiments (Facebook, Google), access panels and online marketplaces (Lucid, MTurk, Prolific, etc.), and survey providers that support survey experiments (Yougov, Ipsos etc.).  

The workshop will be taught by an interdisciplinary team of faculty members of the Centre of Behavioural Experimental and Action Research (C-BEAR), leveraging examples from Politics, Economics, Business and Psychology.

The workshop will address the responsible conduct of research during experimental studies, covering research ethics, pre-registration, and debriefing practices for deceptive research designs.

Days 1 and 2  will provide the basic knowledge to design, analyse and present experiments such as randomised controlled trials (RCTs), while Days 3, 4, and 5 will focus on laboratory, survey and field experiments.

By the end of the course participants will:

  • Be able to read critically the literature on experimental methods in a variety of different disciplines.
  • Know how to interact more effectively and efficiently with service providers that offer A/B testing experiments, surveys experiments, or participants’ panels.
  • Know how to design, pre-register, implement, analyse and present simple experiments.
  • Be familiar with classic lab, survey, and field experiments.
  • Be familiar with the ethics and legal requirements for conducting experiments with human subjects.
  • Be familiar with the statistical methods required for analysing simple experiments.

The target audience of the course are professionals, members of public institutions and researchers that are approaching experimental methods for the first time and are interested to implement an experiment for the first time or to commission an experiment to a survey company or other service provider.

The course does not require any previous knowledge of experimental design or statistics and is open to anybody with basic high school knowledge of mathematics.  The level (junior, senior, etc.) of the course is open.

The workshop is designed to have no requisite beyond a basic understanding of secondary school mathematics. The first two days will provide the students the mathematical and statistical tools to engage effectively with the rest of the course.

Participants need to bring their own device that can run basic office suites, and free versions of R and Stata. A tablet with a keyboard might also work. 

Course Code


Course Leader

Dr Tereza Capelos, Dr Paul Conway, Dr João Ferreira and Dr Paolo Spada
Course Description

Day 1


  • History, definitions and different types of experiments
  • Advantages and disadvantages of experiments with respect to other research designs
  • The ethics of experiments


  • Implementing a simple experiment
  • Analysing and presenting the results of a simple experiment

Day 2


  • The Potential Outcome Model and its assumptions


  • What is pre-registration and how to pre-register an experiment?
  • Replication of a simple experiment.

Day 3 – Laboratory experiments


  • Introduction to laboratory experiments
  • An overview of classic lab experiments


  • An overview of software (e.g. Z-tree, O-tree) and service providers (e.g. Mturk, Prolific) for lab experiments
  • Replicating the analysis and presentation of a simple lab experiment

Day 4 – Survey experiments

  • Introduction to survey experiments
  • An overview of classic survey experiments


  • Designing a Conjoint experiment in Qualtrics
  • Replicating the analysis and presentation of a simple conjoint experiment

Day 5 – Field experiments

  • Introduction to Field Experiments
  • An overview of classic field experiments


  • A recent example of project management of a field experiment
  • Replicating the analysis and presentation of a simple field experiment
StartEndPlaces LeftCourse Fee 
01/07/202405/07/20240[Read More]

How would you rate your experience today?

How can we contact you?

What could we do better?

   Change Code