Connecting Past and Future Educational Practice: A Post-COVID-19 Present
Keywords:distance learning, distance communication, distance student experience, teaching presence
The challenges of supporting learners at a distance are enduring. But the nature of these challenges is changing, and this change has been particularly notable since the beginning of the pandemic and the rapid worldwide move to distance and online learning. A brief look is taken at the evolving nature of the distance-student experience under the theme of “Time is the new distance”. This is complemented with four papers in this issue, each of which is concerned with an aspect of meeting the challenges of supporting distance learners. Hartline et al. draw attention to the importance of the teacher’s presence in decreasing student anxiety. Forbes explores the effectiveness of asynchronous communication as an effective learner support. Cameron et al. share a national perspective from a wider international study, concluding that clear communication by institutions and other authorities can reduce uncertainty for students and is necessary to mitigate the negative effects of future disruptions to study. And finally, Adebisi and Olatunji round off the set of articles with findings that the key psychosocial experience of students revolves around the flexibility and cost of distance learning, work–life pressures, and the availability of faculty.
Copyright (c) 2022 Simon Paul Atkinson, Alison Fields
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