Daron Acemoglu, David Laibson , John A List
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Internet-based educational resources are proliferating rapidly. One concern associated with these (potentially transformative) technological changes is that they will be disequalizing - as many technologies of the last several decades have been - creating superstar teachers and a winner-take-all education system. These important concerns notwithstanding, we contend that a major impact of web-based educational technologies will be the democratization of education: educational resources will be more equally distributed, and lower-skilled teachers will benefit. At the root of our results is the observation that skilled lecturers can only exploit their comparative advantage if other teachers complement those lectures with face-to-face instruction. This complementarity will increase the quantity and quality of face-to-face teaching services, potentially increasing the marginal product and wages of lower-skill teachers.
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