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Maxwell X Lab

Project Report

ProLiteracy Adult Literacy

August 2019

Project Description

  • Partners: ProLiteracy, and four adult literacy organizations
  • Intervention: Text message reminders
  • Method: RCT
  • Outcomes: Increased program attendance

Project Report

The Maxwell X Lab partnered with ProLiteracy and four local adult literacy organizations to test whether weekly reminders and encouragement would affect attendance. In June 2018, students were randomized to either business-as-usual or weekly text encouragements.

The automated weekly messages were personalized reminders that also provided general encouragement based on behavioral science research in values affirmation, growth mindset, and grit. Students could also reply to the messages, allowing the staff to have ongoing text conversations with students via an online platform. After 8 weeks, the weekly encouragement increased attendance by 25 percent.

The absolute improvement in attendance remained after 15 weeks, with a 16 percent increase in attendance among students who received the automated messages.

Maxwell X Lab
426 Eggers Hall