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

Introductory Biology Online: Assessing Outcomes of Two Student Populations


no significant differences were found in outcomes for students in the two modes of instruction... Based on post-tests, online students were as successful as on-campus students at acquiring an understanding of biology content, acquiring graphing skill, increasing reasoning ability, and developing positive attitudes toward science... ANOVA detected no significant difference in means for reasoning post-test scores between online (M = 9.66) and on-campus (M = 8.56) classes... no significant . . . difference in pre-or post-attitudes between online and on-campus students for interest in biology and confidence in ability to succeed in biology ... This study found that there were no statistically significant differences in outcomes for students in online and on-campus biology classes... This study provides evidence that certain types of students can learn as much biology content, develop their reasoning and graphing skills, and have as positive attitudes toward biology as those enrolled in an on-campus class.


No Significant Difference

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A Case Study in the Benefits and Costs of a joint Industry/University Designed Program Featuring Integrated Delivery Methods


...there was little variation among final grades for students enrolled in the three modes (studio site, videoconferencing sites, and videotape sites)... no significant performance difference is noted between those who took the course on campus or at a distance, and for the distance learners, course delivery mode did not make a difference . Yet it was surprising to note that those who watched by videotape rated the course considerably higher (4.57) than those who participated live and . . . interactively by videoconfereince (3.77). To the statement 'The technologies used made me uncomfortable,' the group that disagreed the most (indicating the highest comfort level ) were those using videotape, followed closely by the campus group.

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