NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
loading...

The Competitive Effects of Online Education

David J. Deming, Michael Lovenheim, Richard W. Patterson

NBER Working Paper No. 22749
Issued in October 2016
NBER Program(s):Economics of Education

We study the impact of online degree programs on the market for U.S. higher education. Online degree programs increase the competitiveness of local education markets by providing additional options in areas that previously only had a small number of brick-and-mortar schools. We show that local postsecondary institutions in less competitive markets experienced relative enrollment declines following a regulatory change in 2006 that increased the market entry and enrollment of online institutions. Impacts on enrollment were concentrated among private non-selective institutions, which are likely to be the closest competitors to online degree programs. We also find increases in per-student instructional spending among public institutions. Our results suggest that by increasing competitive pressure on local schools, online education can be an important driver of innovation and productivity in U.S. higher education.

download in pdf format
   (399 K)

email paper

A non-technical summary of this paper is available in the January 2017 NBER digest.  You can sign up to receive the NBER Digest by email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w22749

Forthcoming: The Competitive Effects of Online Education, David J. Deming, Michael Lovenheim, Richard Patterson. in Productivity in Higher Education, Hoxby and Stange. 2018

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded* these:
Goodman, Melkers, and Pallais w22754 Can Online Delivery Increase Access to Education?
Hoxby w19816 The Economics of Online Postsecondary Education: MOOCs, Nonselective Education, and Highly Selective Education
Deming, Goldin, Katz, and Yuchtman w20890 Can Online Learning Bend the Higher Education Cost Curve?
Cappelen, List, Samek, and Tungodden w22898 The Effect of Early Education on Social Preferences
Bordo and Sinha w22581 A Lesson from the Great Depression that the Fed Might have Learned: A Comparison of the 1932 Open Market Purchases with Quantitative Easing
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Themes
Data
People
About

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us