What researchers learned about online HE during pandemic

As an assistant professor of economics at City College of New York, Kameshwari Shankar knew that one of the most important requirements of scientific research was often missing from studies of the effectiveness of online higher education: a control group, writes Jon Marcus for The Hechinger Report.

Then came the COVID-19 pandemic, forcing almost everyone on earth online and creating a randomised trial on a planetary scale with a control group so big, it was a researcher’s wildest dream. “The pandemic and the lockdown – that’s a great natural experiment,” said Shankar. “A gold mine of evidence,” a study she co-authored called it.

Now the results of this experiment are starting to come in. They suggest that online higher education may work better than pre-pandemic research showed, and that it is evolving decisively toward a combination of in-person and online, or ‘blended’, classes.
Full report on The Hechinger Report site