Review Article

Evaluation of the Cost-effectiveness of Virtual and Traditional Education Models in Higher Education: A Systematic Review Study


Context: Recent advances in information technology and electronic devices, as well as limitations in traditional education, have persuaded higher education systems to use the virtual model as an alternative. The present systematic review aimed at evaluating the cost-effectiveness of both the traditional and virtual education models.
Methods: In this systematic review, articles published in known English and Persian databases, such as MEDLINE (PubMed), Scopus, Science Direct, HTA, Cochrane, Irandoc, Magiran, and SID from 2007 to 2017 were retrieved. Studies on health technologies and economic were also reviewed. For this purpose, the hierarchical search algorithm and the keywords “e-Learning” and “traditional education” were used.
Results: Ten studies were included, and their results were slightly different. Most studies showed that the cost-effectiveness of virtual education alone or in combination with traditional education (blended model) was equal or greater than that of traditional education. The data analysis of the articles was performed by comparing cost, effectiveness (Min, SD, QASE), cost-effectiveness (ICER), and the average cost per student. Cost-effectiveness refers to achieve the highest output at the lowest cost. The results showed that due to the use of multimedia, lack of space and time limitations, admission of a large number of students, the increased student satisfaction, easy and fast access to information, and use of Sharable Content Object Reference model in producing content and instruction, distance higher education reduces education costs while compensating for the lack of human resources in the teaching-learning process.
Conclusion: One of the effective methods in the education of medical students seems to be Web-based teaching as traditional teaching. Considering the predominance of the web-based method, it is recommended to be used in educational programs in the universities.


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IssueVol 3, No 1 (2019) QRcode
SectionReview Article
Electronic Learning-virtual education-traditional education; blended learning-cost effectiveness Higher Education

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How to Cite
Pakdaman M, Nazari Moghadam M, Dehghan HR, Dehghani A, Namayandeh M. Evaluation of the Cost-effectiveness of Virtual and Traditional Education Models in Higher Education: A Systematic Review Study. Health Tech Ass Act. 2020;3(1).