Distance Learning in Higher Education: The Experience of the Covid-19 Pandemic and War in Ukraine
Keywords:Academic Success, Distance Learning, Ukraine's Higher Education System, the COVID-19 Pandemic, Experience, Student, War
Distance learning has become one of the most popular educational trends of the 21st century, and the COVID-19 pandemic and war in Ukraine has only accelerated the process of its integration into the education sector.
The purpose of our work is to study the influence of the online learning format on the adaptation and academic success of students, as well as to search for promising analogues.
The methodology. In addition to a comprehensive theoretical analysis, which included a comparison of different approaches and research, we used the method of interviewing respondents, which involved 200 first-year students from 6 Ukrainian higher education institutions (H.S. Skovoroda Kharkiv National Pedagogical University, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, V. N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, National Technical University of Ukraine Kyiv Polytechnic Institute, State Biotechnology University, Kharkiv National University of Radio Electronics). The survey was conducted online using the Google Forms platform in the period from December 19 to 26, 2021, the calculation and visualization of the received data were performed using Microsoft Office tools. Fisher's statistical test (online-tool) was used to establish differences between the indicators of academic success of the respondents of the two groups.
Results. We decided to compare the academic success of students who study online with students included in the blended learning system. Thus, only 8% of the respondents who took the course in an online format received a mark of 5 at the end of the academic semester, while almost a quarter (25%) of the students of the second group who took the course in blended learning received the highest score. We also asked respondents to evaluate the process of their own adaptation to new conditions (distance and blended learning). The results of the survey showed that the adaptation process proceeds much easier in the conditions of the blended learning or Flipped Classroom blended learning model, while the adaptation of respondents to the online format had a number of problems.
Conclusion. Online learning has a high potential, which is difficult to realize due to the high demands on technical support, communication problems in an unfamiliar space, and the lack of social presence of participants in the educational process. Blended learning, as a combination of full-time and distance learning, can offset the shortcomings of online learning and realize its potential. The next step in our research will be to compare the performance of another learning models.
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