The effects of the Covid-19 pandemic seen through the lens of the Italian university teachers and the comparison with school teachers’ perspective

Carlo Giovannella and Marcello Passarelli

pp. pp. 120 - 136, download






In this paper, we report one of the first investigations conducted at the National level with university teachers, with the aim to capture their perceptions about the capability of the learning ecosystems to react to the lockdown imposed by the pandemic and the recourse to on-line learning. The study, conducted about two months after the beginning of the lock-down, shows that: a) learning ecosystems reacted promptly and in a satisfactory manner to assure the didactic continuity at both the systemic and individual level; b) the teaching activities were mainly confined to transmissive ex-cathedra lectures in the attempt to reproduce standard university dynamics; c) the working load increased with respect to face-to-face activities; d) the intention to use on-line learning in the future is driven by preconceptions rather than experiences and by the capability to manage one’s own time. The comparison with the outcomes of a similar study conducted with school teachers shows that the latter adopt a broader spectrum of didactic activities (although they still tend to remain in their comfort zone), experienced a heavier increase of the working load, and were more influenced by the situation they experienced. Although both teachers categories recognized the relevance of digital pedagogy, in the case of school teachers - as shown by the causal structure of the variables considered in our studies - it should be urgently included in teacher education curricula, while in the case of the university teachers it appears to be a possible route to support integration of on-line activities with standard face-to-face ones.



Keywords: COVID-19 pandemic, on-line learning, emergency remote education (ERE), learning ecosystems’ reaction, university teachers, school teachers, future perspectives, network analysis, causal discovery

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