Questions arise regarding course delivery formats as universities seek to meet demands for course flexibility while maintaining a quality curriculum. This longitudinal study considers face-to-face and online delivery formats in a highly technical, upper-level business course. The course and instructor are constant across all years. The instructor maintains a similar learning environment across the delivery formats by codifying all lectures in their entirety. We control for age, gender, and ethnicity. Initially we ask: Will students in the face-to-face format perform better than those in the online format? We expand our investigation to include consideration of the impact of GPA, previous accounting course work, course load and previous course-type experience. Interestingly, our results indicate that although delivery format does not impact the students’ learning success, GPA does. We find that student GPA is the most consistent student success indicator across both delivery formats. Our study suggests that students who possess the learning skills needed to achieve good grade performance are better able to adapt those skills to differing delivery methods.


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