The Online Paradox of Community College Completion

Research by PAR Board member Dr. Peter Shea, University of Albany—SUNY,  showcased in a recent US News article.

Community college students who take online courses are more likely – 25 percent more likely to be exact – to complete their two-year associate degree or some sort of certificate than students who didn’t take any online classes. Dr. Peter Shea, author of the research being cited in this article, also found that not only are online course takers more likely to graduate, they’re more likely to graduate sooner than students who don’t take any online classes. Shea presented this research in a working paper at the American Education Research Association conference in Chicago in April 2015.

“It’s a bit of a paradox,” said Shea. “They’re doing worse at the course level, but at the program level – despite lower grades – they’re finishing.”

Click here to read the complete article in US News.