Remote learning in a changed world: Enabling factors for preservice mathematics teachers

Year: 2021

Author: Enu, Justice

Type of paper: Symposium

As a result of the novel coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), schools and institutions of higher learning around the globe were shut down. The new dawn has come; therefore, the education sector had to re-imagine the way education is delivered. The disruption caused by the pandemic forced the institutions to change the delivery mode of their courses. Hence, there was a transition from traditional face-to-face teaching and learning to online learning which is called emergency remote teaching and learning (ERTL). Institutions of higher education adapted ERTL to protect the academic calendar, avoid the spread of the virus, and protect the lives of students and academics. Teacher educators and preservice mathematics teachers were forced to use digital tools to access teaching and learning and course materials. How these teachers and students are capable of using online resources in teaching and learning arose. Adapting to this emergency remote teaching and learning was a challenge for teachers, students, and parents (Khlaif &Salha, 2020; Misirli & Ergulec, 2021;). However, the extent to which teacher educators and preservice mathematics teachers have successfully mastered and overcame these challenges remains unknown. This paper examines the enabling factors for preservice mathematics teachers from four higher education institutions in three countries regarding remote learning. The study adopted the cross-sectional survey design (Cohen et al., 2011) because it sought to investigate the enabling factors of emergency remote learning of preservice mathematics teachers from three countries. A questionnaire was developed using Google Forms to investigate the factors that appear to be working for preservice mathematics teachers in ERTL. The google form link was then distributed to participants who gave consent to participate in the study via the participating institutions' learning management systems (LMS) and students' WhatsApp platforms. In all, a total of 95 preservice teachers participated in the study. The result of the survey indicates three enabling factors: task completion and immediate feedback, quick and easy access to learning materials, and saving travel time. The means and standard deviations are essential in the result section. These realizations are expected to shed some light on higher education emergency remote learning in mathematics education. Through the voices of the preservice mathematics teachers, we reveal what students at the four institutions think about emergency remote teaching and learning.