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In Layman's terms, what is the difference between an observational study and an experimental study?

In Layman's terms, what is the difference between an observational study and an experimental study? My question is from: Researchers asked a sample of 50 1st grade teachers and a sample of 50 12th grade teachers how much of their own money they spent on school supplies in the previous school year. They wanted to see if teachers at one grade level spend more than teachers at the other grade level. My gut says this is an observational study but I'm not sure. Thanks for answering.

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