The Case for the Traditional Classroom

24 Pages Posted: 1 Aug 2012 Last revised: 8 Feb 2015

See all articles by Alan Green

Alan Green

Stetson University; Lander University

Date Written: June 10, 2012


Criticism of higher education and tight budgets have increased pressure on instructors to consider new pedagogical methods, including extensive use of classroom experiments and online or hybrid/online courses. This study analyzes the impact of different pedagogical methods in six sections of macroeconomic principles taught at Lander University during the 2011-2012 academic year. A traditional lecture/discussion control section is compared with three sections that use lecture with an extensive class experiment and two hybrid online sections that met only once per week during the regular semester. Controlling for student characteristics, students in experimental sections scored on average nearly five percent worse on the post-test, while those in the hybrid online sections scored nearly ten percent lower than the control students. These results indicate that instructors and administrators should be wary of unproven methods, especially online instruction.

Keywords: economic education, online pedagogy, classroom experiments

JEL Classification: A22

Suggested Citation

Green, Alan, The Case for the Traditional Classroom (June 10, 2012). Available at SSRN: or

Alan Green (Contact Author)

Stetson University ( email )

Gulfport, FL 33707
United States

Lander University ( email )

Greenwood, SC 29649
United States

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