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Negative Impacts From the Shift to Online Learning During the COVID-19 Crisis: Evidence from a Statewide Community College System

The COVID-19 pandemic led to an abrupt shift from in-person to virtual instruction in Spring 2020. Using two complementary difference-in-differences frameworks, one that incorporates student fixed effects and another that leverages within-course variation on whether students started their Spring 2020 courses in-person or online, we estimate the impact of this shift on the academic performance of Virginia’s community college students. With both approaches, we find modest negative impacts (four to eight percent) on course completion. Our results suggest that faculty experience teaching a given course online does not mitigate the negative effects of students abruptly switching to online instruction.

Keywords
COVID, community college, online learning
Education level
Document Object Identifier (DOI)
10.26300/gx68-rq13

EdWorkingPaper suggested citation:

Bird, Kelli A., Benjamin L. Castleman, and Gabrielle Lohner. (). Negative Impacts From the Shift to Online Learning During the COVID-19 Crisis: Evidence from a Statewide Community College System. (EdWorkingPaper: 20-299). Retrieved from Annenberg Institute at Brown University: https://doi.org/10.26300/gx68-rq13

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