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Measuring Causal Effects in the Social Sciences

University of Copenhagen via Coursera

This course may be unavailable.


How can we know if the differences in wages between men and women are caused by discrimination or differences in background characteristics? In this PhD-level course we look at causal effects as opposed to spurious relationships. We will discuss how they can be identified in the social sciences using quantitative data, and describe how this can help us understand social mechanisms.

Please note!
The course will close for new learner enrollment on December 29, 2021. If you have already enrolled, you will continue to see it on your Coursera Dashboard as long as you remain enrolled in the course.

If you are interested in earning a Course Certificate for this course, please upgrade or apply for Financial Aid by December 28, 2021, if you have not already done so. If you are a Coursera for Business learner, you can continue to use your sponsored credit. In order to earn a Course Certificate, you will need to complete all graded assignments, including peer reviews, by June 26, 2022. After that point, no new assignment submissions will be accepted for Certificate credit.

While we hope that you will be able to complete the course, you can find more information about requesting a refund ( or unenrolling from a course ( in our Learner Help Center.


  • The Nature of Causal Effects and How to Measure Them
    • Welcome to the first week of the course! Thıs week we are looking at the nature of causal effects and how to measure them.
  • The Multivariate Regression Model and Mediating Factors
    • This second module introduces you multivariate regression model and the concept of mediating factors.
  • Randomized Controlled Trials
    • In this third week of the course we are having a closer look at causality and the randomzied controlled trial.
  • Instrumental Variables
    • The fourth week of the course we will go through the concept of instrumental variables.
  • Difference in Difference
    • The final module of the course deals with the difference in difference. We hope you enjoyed the course and have learned something that you can use in your future work and research.

Taught by

Anders Holm


3.3 rating, based on 3 reviews

Start your review of Measuring Causal Effects in the Social Sciences

  • This is a challenging course, especially for those who only intend to breeze through the videos alone. Reading the recommended text before and/or after the videos is strongly advised.
  • Adam Quek

    Adam Quek completed this course, spending 2 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.

    I found this course to be particularly useful, as it introduces lots of common terminologies used for social science researches.
  • Huy

    Huy is taking this course right now, spending 1 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be easy.

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