Learning From the Learning Experience During the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Inquiry

Learning From the Learning Experience During the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Inquiry

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-6684-4190-9.ch002
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The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all of us. Some have been affected more, some less. In many cases, the poor have become poorer and students have lost learning opportunities, which is more so in the developing world. Also, this pandemic has exposed both the strengths and weaknesses of the healthcare systems in most countries. This chapter sets out to explain how learning has been affected by this pandemic. It also highlights the author's experience as a lecturer and researcher during the pandemic. Pandemic responses are described as inefficient and reactive and characterized by delayed action, poor planning, and corruption. With the increased levels of poverty, unemployment, and inflation, it heavily impacted the low-income households restricted by the strict lockdowns and pandemic protocols. This motivated non-governmental organizations to act and initiate by pooling their resources to mitigate the gaps in the government's responses. The recovery framework also needed to set a clear path for the country's new normal.
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The Covid-19 was announced as a pandemic in March 2020 by the World Health Organization (WHO) when it started spreading at a very fast rate all over the world. When people couldn’t earn money and put food on their tables, it not only affected people’s health but also affected their economies, thus affecting the economies of their countries. The World Bank describes tertiary education a post-secondary education, that can help foster growth, reduce poverty, and boost shared prosperity, which includes not just public or private institutions but all other technical training institutes, colleges, universities, and even vocational schools. To attain growth and innovation, it is necessary that children receive tertiary/ higher education; it is true that people who are well-educated, are the ones who are more likely to be employed, they are more productive, they can cope with economic shocks better and are able to earn more wages (World Bank, 2021).

It is important that students receive tertiary level education because it not only helps build individual strengths, but it benefits the society and the country. Students who have achieved higher level education have a higher sense of civic participation. Similarly, for a stronger nation, it is important that citizens are well prepared for becoming active members of the society in order to learn necessary job skills or even to increase tax revenues with more earnings (World Bank, 2021). According to data given by the World Bank, compared to primary and secondary education, the economic returns are the highest for the tertiary education at an estimated 17% increase in earnings in the whole educational system (World Bank, 2021).

The covid-19 pandemic has thus led students from diverse backgrounds from developing parts of the world to the risk of greater vulnerabilities, thus widening barriers to learning (OECD, 2020). Sudden shifts from face to face to online, due to the pandemic in learning experiences, has led to universities believing that the new hybrid modes of learning can emerge, but it could lead to a digital divide, widening equality gaps. Similarly, there was a poorer learning experience expected from students when adopted online learning (Said, 2021). The “Learning Generation” report, a report by the Education Commission, concluded that there should be more spendings on education allocated for middle-income and lower-income countries, which was approximately 1.25 trillion dollars per year to around 3 trillion dollars i.e., double between 2015 to 2030 (Thomas, 2020).

The financing of education depends heavily on households, in poorer countries compared to richer nations; in wealthy countries or high-income nations, private expenses accounts for just 19 percent spending on education, whereas private expenditure in poorer countries or low income and middle-income nations accounts for 38 percent spending on education. The main reason for such conditions is because in poor nations, families are poorer, they make great efforts to educate their children. Now, since the pandemic led to loss of jobs, and loss of income sources, poorer families must choose between higher education or even food for their children (Thomas, 2020). Hence, it can be argued that, due to the lack of proper network infrastructures like proper internet access, computers, and lack of abilities to use available resources effectively, were the major challenges in the developing world (Mekonnen & Muluye, 2020).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Teaching Methods: Mainly to make understand this is online but also applied in hybrid mood to teaching in university education that came to us during C-19 pandemic.

SMART Classroom: It means well equipped with technological devices but there no students in front of teacher – lack of face-to-face interactive session. This process also we can call unsmart learning process.

COVID Effects: It means here to discuss on education mainly at university level.

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