DOI: 10.38159/ehass.202341412 ISSN: 2720-7722

An Analysis of Challenges Faced by Academics During the Transition from Contact to Online Learning

Siyasanga Mgoduka, Hloniphile Cleopatra Zwane
  • Automotive Engineering

The Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic affected many lives and sectors across the world. In the higher education sector, Covid-19 caused a drastic shift from contact learning to multiple forms of online learning. It is in this context that the paper undertook a critical analysis of the challenges experienced by academics because of Covid-19. A comprehensive literature search was conducted on 6 databases (Google Scholar, ScienceDirect, Jstor, Academic Search Complete, SpringerLink, and SAGE Journals) for relevant studies published from the year 2019 to 2022. Moreover, further relevant studies were retrieved from the reference list of studies identified from the initial search. The search terms employed by the researchers were COVID-19, remote learning, e-learning, online learning, higher education, information technology and asynchronous learning systems. For the selection of the most relevant articles for the final review, the researchers employed inclusion and exclusion criteria. Studies that addressed higher education online learning and the challenges encountered by higher education due to Covid-19 were eligible for inclusion. The findings revealed that academics encountered multiple challenges during the transition from contact learning to online learning, these include the academic’s limited experience and lack of training in the pedagogy of online learning, challenges related to planning and adaptability, issues of network and connectivity, insufficient teaching and learning resources, workload, and stress along with the unconducive physical spaces and environment. Based on the findings presented, this study recommended that the pedagogical strategies must be revised. Furthermore, necessary adjustments in infrastructure in higher education institutions must also be made. This will ensure the smooth running of the teaching and learning process. Moreover, the systematic flaws and transformation gaps in higher education institutions have been made clear by the shift from contact learning to online learning. Thus, this study concludes that blended learning may emerge as the default teaching mode in higher learning institutions, this ensures the maximisation of efficiency. Keywords: Covid-19, Online Teaching, Contact Or Face-To-Face Education, Higher Education, Technology.

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