The coronavirus pandemic has brought international study programs to a standstill on university campuses around the globe, this way turning the world’s eyes towards online learning. In recent days, most of the international universities have unveiled broad plans focused on offering classes primarily online.
has conducted a survey which focused on getting the opinion of 2176 international students aiming at studying in Europe. The survey brings data on students’ perspectives about this critical issue such as online learning which most probably is going to deprive them of the residential experience in the foreign country.
The idea of turning the mode of teaching from classroom learning into online learning seems to be quite disappointing for most of the students who were planning to continue their studies abroad.
30% of the respondents asked about this issue convincingly declared that they would cancel their studies in Europe if this shift takes place while 22.3% said that they probably would cancel their studies. Undecided students were 17.1%. One the other hand, students that answered with probably no were 13.3% and definitely no 17.3%.
Evidently, there is a vast difference between the students who favour classroom learning with 78.2% comparing to online learning with 23.2%.
The majority of the students that were part of this survey, with 77.2% have had previous experience with online learning.
The level of their satisfaction with this experience remains quite low. Very satisfied were only 5.5% of them, somewhat satisfied were 8.8% while slightly satisfied were 15.8%. On the other side, respondents who declared that were slightly dissatisfied were 9.9%, somewhat dissatisfied with online learning were 13.1%, very dissatisfied with such an experience were 24.1%. The ones who did not have any experience with online learning so far were 22.8%.
There is also the concern of having to pay the full fee despite only attending online classes.
88.4% of the students responding to the question if their universities should reduce fees for online classes answered with yes, while only 11.6% responded with no.
Studying abroad provides students with the opportunity to learn and grow as an individual. The previous studies that analysed the effect that studying abroad has on students show that the ones who choose to study in a foreign state experience a more significant impact on personality development compared to those who follow their studies at their home country. Students who spend time physically abroad develop a deeper understanding and respect for global issues, create more favourable attitudes toward other cultures, develop more persuasive intercultural communication skills, improve personal and professional self-image, and get better foreign language skills.
By studying abroad, students get the opportunity to enhance their understanding of different cultures, races, customs, and business practices, which increases tolerance, respect and open-mindedness.
As a result, due to all of these limitations, most of the students decided to position themselves against online learning as it gets them deprived of a tremendous personal and professional enhancing experience.