The COVID-19 is gradually seeping through the world and disrupting every sector of the economy. Education is no exception to this. The pandemic has caused school closures in 188 countries. The school closures affected at least 1.5 billion students and 63 million primary and secondary teachers throughout the world. Over 90% of the student’s population is confined to their homes. This has paved the way for alternative learning methods, modified examination formats and admission procedures. So, let’s check out the three ways this Coronavirus period reshaped the education sector.
1. Assessments and exams
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The COVID-19 pandemic not only caused the school closures but also interrupted with exams and assessments. Several exams have been cancelled or postponed. Nearly 11 exams were cancelled in the United States alone. 57 were rescheduled to take place in the next academic year. This has left parents and children devastated and worried about their careers.
- The time didn’t affect only the internal assessments. The GCSE and A level exams have been cancelled in the UK for the entire cohort.
- Several universities have modified their admission procedure to match pace with the COVID-19 pandemic. The SAT exams, for instance, were supposed to be held on May 2, 2020, and are now cancelled.
- Students applying for higher education may have to wait for another academic year due to the Coronavirus. For example, Cornell University cancelled all applications for its higher education curriculum.
- Some universities and colleges have found a way to assess students even in this insane time. They have replaced the traditional exams with online assessment tools. Thus, educational institutions may use GPAs and degree classifications to sort out applicants instead of traditional admission tests.
- Some students’ careers may benefit from these interruptions. For example, in Norway, it has been decided to award all 10th-grade students a high school degree.
Universities had come up with another plan of using predicted grades as a solution to the cancelled assessments. But, research shows that the results are often inaccurate. Also, the predictive grades are usually lower for children from disadvantaged backgrounds than the ones from advantaged backgrounds irrespective of their merit.
2. Studying abroad opportunities
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Students are worried that their dream of studying abroad may remain only a dream due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The pandemic has affected the higher education sector in different ways. School closure and exam cancellation are just two of them. Unfortunately, your dream of studying abroad may also be affected by the pandemic. Schools have shut down. Exams have been cancelled. Immigration policies have got stricter. So, here are some points you should keep a tab on for your homeland and your destination country.
Restrictions on immigration
Many countries are restricting entry at their borders to curb the further spreading of this virus. Only permanent residents and nationals are allowed as long as the current situation isn’t controlled. You should follow the immigration news closely to see if the rules have loosened for foreign students.
No face to face teaching
Universities have also suspended on-campus activities like lectures to reduce the spread of coronavirus. Classes are being held online in most of the cases. Austrian universities, for example, conduct teaching remotely as much as possible. Universities in Belgium have also limited their face to face teaching. They have replaced traditional teaching methods with remote solutions.
The pandemic can delay the award of high school diplomas and degrees. Usually, when students apply for a study programme, they do not meet all requirements. Universities may end up adapting to this scenario due to the school closures. Thus, there are chances that the eligibility for admission in foreign countries will get more flexible.
The pandemic affects not only teaching but also the eligibility of applicants and the educational administration. To make things easier, several universities may change their admission procedures. They may also postpone application deadlines and semester dates. Universities in Germany, for example, postponed their summer semester from April 1 to early May. Classes of the winter semester are also expected to start later than usual- on November 1 2020.
Digital teaching methods
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The alternative teaching methods are like the silver lining for hope during such dismal times. We have been talking about the need for digital transformation for years. It is now that we have finally realised the importance of e-learning. Most universities weren’t ready for digital learning until the COVID-19 pandemic took hold. From sharing knowledge to asking for my assignment help, everything is possible online. Let’s take a look at the ways the education sector embraced the wonders of digital learning.
Video broadcasting tools
There are several reliable video broadcasting tools such as Zoom, WebEx and Google Hangout available for download. These lets educators organise Live stream classroom sessions for students from any part of the world. You can conduct live Q/A sessions, educational audio classes and share live academic videos with your students easily. China, for example, used live television broadcasts to teach over 120 million students.
Asynchronous learning programs
Asynchronous learning programs are entirely student-centric. Educational institutions can use asynchronous learning programs to help students complete their courses. The best thing about these programs is that there’s no compulsion of being present at a specific time or place to complete the courses. You can also share your feedback or query with fellow learners and educators through programs such as the Discussion Board and Digital Library.
3. Real-time social media channels
The real-time social media channels have been developed to address the remote learning challenges by various institutions. The social media channels include Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp, etc. These channels make sure education reaches every student’s doorstep. This technique embraces the ‘learning anytime, anywhere’ tradition. Ask questions or share research material through social media channels instantly.
Automated online evaluation solutions
These help educators create online tests in different formats. The solutions include multiple-choice questions, skill testing, essay typing, aptitude based questions, etc. The automated evaluation solutions consist of a multi-section window. So, it lets the grader convey in-depth evaluations and help students perform better in tests. The AI-powered technology checks the internal score of each student and generates academic reports instantly.
Jedda Cain is a career advisor at a reputed firm in Sydney. She also offers academic writing service as an assignment helper to students at EssayAssignmenthelp.com.au. Jedda loves to watch movies whenever she is free.