Title: Moving from face-to-face to online learning in a week due to the COVID-19 pandemic: higher education students' perceptions

Authors: Stelios Xinogalos

Addresses: Department of Applied Informatics, School of Information Sciences, University of Macedonia, 156 Egnatia Street, GR-546 36 Thessaloniki, Greece

Abstract: Online learning has attracted the interest of researchers and practitioners for decades. Various advantages, challenges and factors affecting the effectiveness of online learning have been reported. However, these findings have been recorded under ideal circumstances and not extraordinary situations, such as the one imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. In this article, the results of a survey on the perceptions of higher education students regarding the emergent transition to online learning are quantitatively and qualitatively analysed. Students evaluated positively the quality, organisation and presentation of synchronous online courses, but they were divided as to whether their quality is equivalent to that of face-to-face courses. The most prominent problems refer to the quality of internet connection, lack of appropriate infrastructure especially for online lab courses, lower quality communication and interaction and a difficulty in keeping concentrated on the course. Despite these issues, instructors and students embraced successfully the solution of online learning.

Keywords: online learning; face-to-face learning; informatics; CS labs; COVID-19 pandemic.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTEL.2022.125846

International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning, 2022 Vol.14 No.4, pp.363 - 381

Received: 17 Apr 2021
Accepted: 15 Jul 2021

Published online: 30 Sep 2022 *

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