Seminar

Can MOOCs Increase Access to Education? Evidence from a Large New Computer Science Degree Program

Sponsored by Center for Education and Policy Analysis

When

Thursday, January 7, 2016
03:30 pm – 05:00 pm
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Where

CERAS Learning Hall
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Contact via phone

6505753743

This event is open to:
Everyone

Admission
Free

Event Details:

Joshua Goodman, Associate Professor of Public Policy, Harvard University

Can MOOCs Increase Access to Education? Evidence from a Large New Computer Science Degree Program

Though MOOCs and online technology have generated excitement about their potential to increase access to education, most existing research has focused on comparisons of student performance across online and in-person formats. We provide the first evidence on the impact of online education on the amount of education pursued. Georgia Tech's Online M.S. in Computer Science is the first model combining the inexpensive nature of MOOCs with a degree program from a highly-ranked institution, a price-quality pairing that has not been seen before. A regression discontinuity design around an admissions threshold shows that access to this low cost, high quality option substantially increases the amount of formal education pursued, with demand driven largely by mid-career Americans for whom in-person options are not appealing. Our estimates suggest that, by satisfying previously unmet demand for mid-career training, this single program will boost annual production of American computer science master’s degrees by eight percent.

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