No Significant Difference

About the Database

The No Significant Difference database was first established in 2004 as a companion piece to Thomas L. Russell's book, "The No Significant Difference Phenomenon" (2001, IDECC, fifth edition), a fully indexed, comprehensive research bibliography of 355 research reports, summaries and papers that document no significant differences (NSD) in student outcomes between alternate modes of education delivery.  Redesigned in 2010 and provided as a service of WCET, (WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies), a division of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education, the database was designed to expand the offerings from the book by providing access to appropriate studies published or discovered after its publication.


This site is intended to function as an ever-growing repository of comparative media studies in education research. Both no significant differences (NSD) and significant differences (SD) studies are constantly being solicited for inclusion in the website. In addition to studies that document no significant difference (NSD), the website includes studies which do document significant differences (SD) in student outcomes based on the mode of education delivery.



Contribute to the Collection

In its new home on the DETA Research website, the database is intended to continue to function as an ever-growing repository of comparative media studies in education research. The current collection is in need of both updates to the current records, as well as the addition of current and emerging research.  As such, both NSD and SD studies are constantly being solicited for inclusion in the website.  If you are interested in assisting as a contributor or editor, contact us.

Records: 210

Computer Extended Instruction in Introductory Calculus


M. Lang


...CAI has the potential to be an effective means of improving the students' understanding of the basic concepts of calculus. No statictical significance was found for achievement ...


No Significant Difference

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The Effectiveness of Distance Education Across Virginia's Community Colleges: Evidence From Introductory College-Level Math and English Courses


D. Xu

S. Jaggars


Although online learning is rapidly expanding in the community college setting, there is little evidence regarding its effectiveness among community college students. In the current study, the authors used a statewide administrative dataset to estimate the effects of taking one's first college-level math or English course online rather than face to face, in terms of both course retention and course performance. Several empirical strategies were used to minimize the effects of student . . . self-selection, including multilevel propensity score. The findings indicate a robust negative impact of online course-taking for both subjects. Furthermore, by comparing the results of two matching methods, the authors conclude that within-school matching on the basis of a multilevel model addresses concerns regarding selection issues more effectively than does traditional propensity score matching across schools. This article was published in Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, vol. 33, 2011


Significant DIfference - Better Results in the Classroom

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