A comprehensive study last year died from the Department of Education, which financed more than 12 years of comparative research concludes that online learning to overcome the media face to face teaching with a range of modest, but statistically significant .
Bill Gates, whose foundation supports a large number of educational programs, last month predicted that in five years, a lot of university education has gone online. "Motivated students will be on the Web," said Gates, speaking at a conference in Lake Tahoe Techonomy. "The university has less space."
But recent research, a National Bureau of Economic Research working paper published, reached a different conclusion. "You can run online education can go much more than a cost, as educators," the authors write.
The study was a comparison experiment in the same class in the class of input savings for students - a group online, and one from each conference. 312 students were students at a large state university (the University of it anonymous). This research was funded by the National Science Foundation and the Department of Education.
Some online groups much worse. Online Hispanic students fell by almost one degree less than fully Hispanic students, the class is over. Male students are about half a degree less than online, as well as low yield, the average college grade point average in university had.
The difference was certainly not a tutorial on the machines replace human-style learning environment. Instead, the class was a huge lecture hall space, hundreds of students.
First, David Figlio, an economist said at Northwestern University and co-author of the study, believed that the flexibility of the Internet - the ability to "walk back and tape" - it is likely that ongoing work lines have an advantage over traditional "teaching to."
Conference on-line is good, with a professional producer and a cameraman. "It was the feeling of being in the room," Figlio alleged. (His coauthors be MarkRush, an economist at the UniversityofFlorida, and LuYin, a student from Florida.)
So what makes the difference in results? Mr. Figlio has some theories. For men the poorest performance and lower performance, he says, was the change of time, convenience of the Web makes it easy for students to put on observation of classes and stuff just before the test proper tactics for the best outcomes.
In part, it's a cliché, but is also partially true, Mr. Figlio said students better time management, dissemination of study time during a semester, since men tend. "And the Internet is easier to put the bad thing, attend the conference," he said.
Performance than Hispanic students in line, said Mr. Figlio could be due to a missing body language speakers and other evidence in the classroom, which may be more important, a student whose first language is not English can. Online, he said, students lose the ability to direct a question to ask the class, during breaks or after class.
A policy issue raised by the study, said Mr Figlio was whether a shift to online education will serve to increase the achievement gap among the best students and others. Mr. Figlio said online resources for learning and consider them valuable.
"But we are saying is that there is no free lunch" in schools on-line, he said.