Impact of Synchronous and Asynchronous University Programmes in the Wake of Covid-19 Outbreak: A Students’ Perspective

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Saima Jabeen, Dr. Saira Taj


This qualitative study reports on how students perceived the impact of synchronous and asynchronous execution ofuniversity programmes on their learning in the wake of Covid-19 during January-July 2020 semester under strict lockdown.  Data for four broad questions regarding differences between the impact of face-to-face, synchronous and asynchronous learning, students’ self-regulation and online assessmentwere collected via an electronically shared survey forEnglish Language and Literature Major studentsin Bachelor of Arts (Hons) at a public university of Pakistan.  Sub-themes emerged under the categories: access and flexibility as prescribed by UNESCO (2020). The analysis indicated although students considered face-to-face learning incomparably better, they found asynchronous mode more accessible and flexible in time, internet connectivity, convenience in studying from home and in accomplishing academic assignments and assessments than synchronous platform offered throughuniversity’s Learning Management System (LMS). However, both the modalities disadvantaged students with special learning needs and limited economic means, fairness in assessment, and teachers with limited technical skills.  The study recommends universities to have better and wiser contingency plans to meet all types of learning as well teaching needs to cope with the unexpected.

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