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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

Reconsidering Research on Learning from Media


R. Clark


…there are no learning benefits to be gained from employing any specific medium to deliver instruction…The best current evidence is that media are mere vehicles that deliver instruction but do not influence student achievements any more than the truck that delivers our groceries causes changes in our nutrition.


No Significant Difference

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Introductory Biology Online: Assessing Outcomes of Two Student Populations


M. Johnson


…ANOVA detected no significant difference in means for reasoning post-test scores between online (M = 9.66) and on-campus (M = 8.56) classes. However, when students were categorized as concrete (zero to three correct answers), transitional (four to seven correct), or formal reseanors (more than seven correct), Chi square analysis revealed a between online and on-campus students.

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