In the academic years of 1962-2 and 1962-3, Richard Feynman gave his celebrated series of lectures to a cohort of undergraduate physics students at Caltech. It has been claimed, probably tongue in cheek, that over the course of the two years the undergrad students themselves abandoned the lectures, but Feynman never noticed because academic staff from across Caltech replaced them, so attendance continuously increased rather than deceasing.

The careers of all those students, now aged somewhere in their mid 70's, have all ended or are winding down. Has anyone done an analysis of performance, relative to expectations, of the careers of these fortunate students?

It is worth noting that while the lectures themselves are brilliant, the courses themselves were a mess. Leighton and Sands and the teaching assistants never knew in advance what Feynman would cover in a lecture, beyond a sentence or two of outline. Everyone was always scrambling behind the scenes, after the fact, to develop meaningful exercises and assignments for the students. How these two facts affected the careers of the students strikes me as fascinating area of study.

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    Since you're intrested in causation, you'd also need access to the subsequent career success of undergrad physics students at CalTech in nearby years, as a control group. You'd further want to access to the career success of physics majors at other top notch US schools from the chosen time periods, to control for changes in the economy and changes in government funding. – C Monsour Jun 20 at 16:41
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    @CMonsour Starting to sound like an article that could be published in a history of science journal. – Avery Jun 20 at 17:38

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