1 Lomonosov Moscow State University (RUSSIAN FEDERATION)
3 Penza State University (RUSSIAN FEDERATION)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN20 Proceedings
Publication year: 2020
Pages: 6831-6839
ISBN: 978-84-09-17979-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2020.1776
Conference name: 12th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-7 July, 2020
Location: Online Conference
Since we are living in a highly turbulent world prone to significant changes, unexpected processes and global disasters, we need to be alert to novelties and transformations of various types to remain at the cutting edge of the teaching profession and to be always helpful to our students. Recently, the whole world has been stricken by the frightful coronavirus pandemic resulting in the necessity of the compulsory self-isolation of many employees. The key consequence of the current situation happened to be the process of restructuring the traditional systems and functions of the society inter alia the educational processes.

The only suitable pattern appeared to be the application of modern technologies. Actually, the opportunities and advantages of online learning have been debated for a while, though both teachers and students have been reluctant to change their habitual approaches and systems. The threats of the grave danger did not leave the choice and both teachers and students were urged to explore and start using alternative approaches and forms of delivering information, and channels of communication with students.

The aim of the present research is to summarise and analyse the initial teachers and students’ experience of converting the whole educational process from the brick-and-mortar to the point-and-click classroom. It is quite a reasonable assumption that any novel endeavour has its benefits and drawbacks, but this research seeks to elicit and analyse the teachers and students’ opinions about the transition process in the immediate situation of being compelled to make instant changes in the educational process. The research question therefore touches upon the perceptions of the transition efficiency, the conveniences of the new learning pattern, and the drawbacks and pitfalls the participants of the educational process encountered.

One of the research instruments is a Google Form questionnaire created based on the authors’ observation and participation in the process of adjusting to the new educational process. Primary data collected are to be analysed with the help of SWAT approach, where the identified strengths and weaknesses of the transition and the new education pattern will be correlated with the future opportunities and possible challenges the teachers are likely to experience. The teachers and students’ attitude to the changes will be compared to understand if they have the same difficulties and if they enjoy the same components of the distance learning.

The preliminary findings suggest that foreign language teachers were first to reform and adjust to the new conditions. Initially both students and teachers welcomed the opportunity of developing new skills and learning new method of teaching and learning. However, as time goes by and new replies arrive, the data are becoming more detailed, critical and helpful for further analysis and conclusions. Thus, it becomes evident that there is no uniformity in the use of platforms and applications; teachers utilise different software products for their purposes. Both teachers and students note the convenience of accessing information and claim a significant increase in the workloads.

The final results are expected to be used for formulating certain guidelines for the teachers to consider while planning their distance lessons and to avoid possible inconveniences in their performance.
Distance learning, information technologies, blended learning, e-learning.