Online and Incomplete

By Scott Jaschik

Online education is all the rage with politicians looking for ways to expand the capacity of public colleges to educate more students — on a budget. Tim Pawlenty, the Republican presidential candidate, pushed online education while he was governor of Minnesota. Rick Perry, the Texas governor who may soon become a Republican presidential candidate, has suggested that web-based instruction could be the key to offering degrees to students that are much less expensive than those in the state today.

But a new study urges caution to those who believe that online education is a panacea for educating more community college students. The study finds that students who enrolled in online courses — controlling for various factors that tend to predict success — were more likely to fail or drop out of the courses than were those who took the same courses in person. Notably, there was not a gap in completion between those enrolled in hybrid and in-person courses.

Continued at: http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2011/07/19/study_finds_higher_dropout_rates_for_community_college_students_who_take_online_courses

Read the Report: http://ccrc.tc.columbia.edu/Publication.asp?UID=872

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