The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Teaching Outcomes in Higher Education

29 Pages Posted: 9 Sep 2021

See all articles by Philipp Hansen

Philipp Hansen

University of Cologne

Lennart Struth

University of Cologne

Max Thon

University of Cologne

Tim Umbach

University of Cologne, Dpt. of Economics

Date Written: September 8, 2021

Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic forced much of the world to adapt suddenly to severe restrictions. In this study, we attempt to quantify the impact of the pandemic on student performance in higher education. To collect data on important covariates, we conducted a survey among first-year students of Microeconomics at the University of Cologne. In contrast to other studies, we are able to consider a particularly suitable performance measure that was not affected by the COVID-19 restrictions implemented shortly before the start of the summer term 2020. While the average performance improves in the first term affected by the restrictions, this does not apply to students with a low socioeconomic background. Trying to identify more specific channels explaining this finding, interestingly, our data yield no evidence that the average improvement results from the altered teaching formats, suggesting instead that the enhanced performance stems from an increase in available study time.

Keywords: COVID-19, Higher Education, Wellbeing, Education and Inequality, Introductory Economics

JEL Classification: I24, I230, I310, I240, A220

Suggested Citation

Hansen, Philipp and Struth, Lennart and Thon, Max and Umbach, Tim, The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Teaching Outcomes in Higher Education (September 8, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3916349 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3916349

Philipp Hansen

University of Cologne ( email )

Albertus-Magnus-Platz
Cologne, 50923
Germany

Lennart Struth

University of Cologne

Albertus-Magnus-Platz
Cologne, 50923
Germany

Max Thon

University of Cologne ( email )

Albertus-Magnus-Platz
Cologne, 50923
Germany

Tim Umbach (Contact Author)

University of Cologne, Dpt. of Economics ( email )

Cologne, 50923
Germany

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