Online courses are an increasingly important part of students’ college experience, but how does this impact what students glean from their college experience? In our study, just published in Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis (EEPA), we analyzed six years of institutional data (all before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic) for three cohorts of students (N=10,572). Overall, our study finds that online course-taking is associated with more efficient college graduation.
[Commentary] An international study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development found no positive evidence of impact of educational technology on student performance. It did not find any significant improvement in reading, math or science in countries that heavily invested in technology to improve student achievement. In fact, the report found that technology perhaps even widened the achievement gaps. Does this mean we should abandon attempts to integrate technology in schools? We are researchers of technology and learning in K-12 environments, and our research suggests this would be shortsighted.
[Binbin Zheng is an Assistant Professor, Michigan State University. Mark Warschauer is Professor of Education and Informatics, University of California, Irvine.]