Education reinvented: How COVID-19 has changed how students learn

Global school closings usher in e-learning on a massive scale.
Written by Melanie Wachsman, Editor
Female student sitting on floor of her apartment with laptop and notes studying
Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto

To say COVID-19 has disrupted education is an understatement. As of mid-April,according to UNESCO, 1.5 billion students and youth(roughly 87% of the world's student population) were affected by school closures in 195 countries, from pre-primary to higher education.

SEE: Online education toolbox: Tips and resources for distance learning (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

"Never before have we witnessed educational disruption on such a scale," said UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay, in a press release

A UNESCO survey of national education systems from 61 countries reports that governments around the world continue to "deliver distance education at scale in an attempt to ensure continuity of learning" despite school closures due to COVID-19.

According to the survey, 90% of high-income countries/territories use existing online learning platforms, while only 53% from low and lower-middle income countries/territories are doing so. The survey also acknowledges the growing concern for parents/caregivers (80%), teachers (64%), and students (48%) who lack digital skills. 

SEE: Technology in education: The latest products and trends (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

As the education sector relies on remote instruction, technology like video conferencing platforms and learning management systems have become the new norm. For those educators, parents, and students needing a crash course in online learning, and how to safely navigate virtual classrooms, the download Online education toolbox: Tips and resources for  distance learning (free PDF) from ZDNet's sister site TechRepublic offers the necessary tips and tools. 

To learn more about available technology products and online learning trends check out Technology in education: The latest products and trends (free PDF) from TechRepublic.

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