Nudge in the classroom: A blueprint for teaching

Political scientist Dana Griffin turned Nudge into an innovative course at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. In the latest issue of PS, she writes about the experience in a piece titled “Nudging Students’ Creative Problem-Solving Skills.” (Gated copy here.) For her upper-level undergraduate course on political decision-making, Griffin created a series of assignments in which students designed their own “nudges” for political and social problems. “Students gave this assignment rave reviews, not only for the course content they learned, but also for what they discovered about their connections to society and its problems,” she writes.

A particularly astute quote from an anonymous student: “I learned it is really hard to design a good nudge! It is challenging to come up with a nudge to solve real social problems. There are not many projects requiring such a level of creativity.”

Well put. Nudges often seem simple, but creating the right one for the right context that produces real results is no easy task.