Dr. Jennifer Bachner (Director, Government Analytics) and Dr. Sarah O’Byrne (Coordinator, Center for Data Analytics, Policy, and Government) have published the article “Teaching Quantitative Skills in Online Courses: Today’s Key Areas of Focus and Effective Learning Tools” in the Journal of Political Science Education.
At both the undergraduate and graduate level, an increasing number of students are completing their coursework online or in hybrid formats. As online learning grows and evolves, and new teaching tools emerge, it is useful to review approaches for effective teaching in this modality.
This paper focuses, in particular, on proven tools in online teaching that can be employed in courses with a strong quantitative analysis component, such as political methodology and political economy courses.
We first highlight critical areas of focus, including text analysis, survey research, artificial intelligence and the communication of results. We then discuss methods and technologies that can be used to teach in these areas, such as social media and news APIs, online labor markets, online meeting spaces and simulation exercises. The final section explores methods for providing meaningful feedback on the types of assignments commonly used when teaching quantitative methods.