This guide provides a detailed account of procedures for conducting traditional in-person laboratory experiments in a “virtual setting.” The main objective of these procedures is to maintain the control of traditional in-person lab studies when conducting studies over the internet. Using the participant pool of the in-person lab the key procedural steps include participants having their webcams on throughout the experiment, technical screenings and attention pledges, playing pre-recorded instructions out loud, upholding clear experimenter roles and communication protocols when interacting with participants, and finally detailed and scripted procedures for managing participants throughout the session. The described procedures have been used for more than 100 sessions and have secured results that are indistinguishable from those from the in-person lab.
Experiments, Methodology, Research Practice
Danz, David; Gupta, Neeraja; Lepper, Marissa; Verterlund, Lise; and Winichakul, K. Pun, "Going Virtual: A Step-by-Step Guide to Taking the In-Person Experimental Lab Online" (2021). Economics: Faculty Publications, Smith College, Northampton, MA.