Online Course-Taking and Expansion of Curricular Options in High Schools

This descriptive study by Cassandra M. D. Hart, Brian Jacob, and Susanna Loeb looks at school and student traits associated with virtual course choice (students taking an online class while at a brick-and-mortar school). The authors find that rural schools and schools with fewer AP offerings are more likely to have students taking a “novel” course online (defined as a course that is not offered at their brick-and-mortar school). Moreover, the students most likely to take these novel online courses are gifted students, female students, non-White students, and students from higher socioeconomic backgrounds.

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