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Teaching and Learning Principles of Microeconomics Online: An Empirical Assessment


  • Chiara Gratton-Lavoie
  • Denise Stanley


How do students enrolled in online courses perform relative to those who choose a more traditional classroom environment? What student characteristics help explain differences in student academic achievement in the two modes of instruction? What factors affect the students' choice of instruction mode? The authors address these questions in relation to the teaching of introductory economics courses. They find that the two groups of students are significantly different in age, gender composition, marital status and number of children, GPA, previous economics exposure, planned major, and other important characteristics. The raw data suggested a higher mean score for the online class sections. But after considering course selection bias, the findings indicated that age and GPA positively affect students' performance in the course, whereas the online teaching mode has a narrowly insignificant, or even negative, effect. Semester effects are most important for the online subsample, and male students enjoy a premium in the traditional classroom setting.

Suggested Citation

  • Chiara Gratton-Lavoie & Denise Stanley, 2009. "Teaching and Learning Principles of Microeconomics Online: An Empirical Assessment," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(1), pages 3-25, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jeduce:v:40:y:2009:i:1:p:3-25 DOI: 10.3200/JECE.40.1.003-025

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Oskar Harmon & William Alpert & Archita Banik & James Lambrinos, 2015. "Class Absence, Instructor Lecture Notes, Intellectual Styles, and Learning Outcomes," Atlantic Economic Journal, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 43(3), pages 349-361, September.
    2. Oskar Harmon & William Alpert & Joseph Histen, 2014. "Online Discussion and Learning Outcomes," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 20(1), pages 33-44, February.
    3. repec:eee:ireced:v:25:y:2017:i:c:p:25-34 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Nick Huntington-Klein & James Cowan & Dan Goldhaber, 2017. "Selection into Online Community College Courses and Their Effects on Persistence," Research in Higher Education, Springer;Association for Institutional Research, vol. 58(3), pages 244-269, May.
    5. repec:kap:iaecre:v:20:y:2014:i:1:p:33-44 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Oskar R. Harmon & James Lambrinos, 2012. "Testing the Effect of Hybrid Lecture Delivery on Learning Outcomes," Working papers 2012-36, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
    7. Mary Mathewes Kassis, 2011. "Distance Education: Course Development and Strategies for Success," Chapters,in: International Handbook on Teaching and Learning Economics, chapter 14 Edward Elgar Publishing.

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