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Using SMS text messaging for teaching and data collection in the behavioral sciences

Reimers, S.J.; Stewart, N.; (2009) Using SMS text messaging for teaching and data collection in the behavioral sciences. (ELSE Working Papers 345). ESRC Centre for Economic Learning and Social Evolution: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

Recent interest in university teaching has focused on interactivity in lectures and practical classes, and teachers in several fields have set up systems in which students can interact with the lecturer using mobile-phone based SMS text messaging. This approach has particular potential in psychology, where students could use SMS messaging as a way of responding in simple psychology experiments or demonstrations. We describe a simple architecture for an SMS-based responding, using an SMS-to-HTTP message relay service, and a php/mySQL input-output handler. We describe briefly two experiments we have run using the system. The first experiment examined anchoring effects in an SMS-based auction. The second experiment examined delay discounting, with participants indicating their intertemporal preferences using SMS. Finally, we evaluate the feedback we obtained from students, about the practical and conceptual issues surrounding text-message based responding.

Type: Working / discussion paper
Title: Using SMS text messaging for teaching and data collection in the behavioral sciences
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://else.econ.ucl.ac.uk/newweb/papers.php#2009
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Experimental Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/18235
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