Teaching English at Online College in Wuhan Against COVID-19 Pandemic: Preparation, Challenges and Implications for Students and Teachers

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PLoS One. October 1, 2021; 16 (10): e0258137. doi: 10.1371 / journal.pone.0258137. Electronic collection 2021.


Online education, including college education in English, has grown rapidly over the past decade in China. Aspects like e-preparedness, the benefits and challenges of online education have been well studied in normal situations, but large-scale fully online language teaching in emergencies can tell a story. different. A survey of 2,310 non-English speaking students and 149 English teachers from three types of twelve higher education institutions in Wuhan was conducted to assess their readiness to teach English online during the COVID-pandemic. 19, to determine the challenges faced by them and to draw implications for the future online education of English colleges. Quantitative statistics collected using two readiness scales adapted from previous studies showed that both cohorts were slightly below the readiness level for the unexpected online transition from college education in English. The overall readiness of the students was 3.68 out of a score of 5, and that of the teachers was 3.70. Individual differences have been explored and reported. A qualitative results analysis summarized six categories of challenges faced by students, namely technical challenges, challenges regarding the learning process, learning environment, self-control, efficiency and effectiveness. and health issues. Although students reported the highest level of readiness when it comes to accessing technology, they were most troubled by technical issues during online study. For teachers, of three types of challenges, they were the most frustrated with educational challenges, especially student disengagement from online courses. The survey provided information on the development of English language teaching in online colleges. Institutions should take the lead and continue to promote the development of online college English teaching, as a majority of respondents declared their willingness and intention to continue learning / teaching English as part of the online or blended courses during the post-pandemic period. They are supposed to remove technical barriers for teachers and students, and assess the readiness levels of both cohorts before launching online English lessons. Institutions should also organize appropriate training for the instructors concerned, in particular on pedagogical matters. It is suggested that language teachers pay special attention to student engagement and communication in online courses.

PMID: 34597337 | DOI: 10.1371 / journal.pone.0258137

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