Impact of COVID-19 on online learning


This is a recording of the June 1st session by Dr. Tony Bates on the Impact of COVID-19 on online learning. This presentation was part of the Inquiry into Contemporary Issues in Learning Technologies openly accessed course in the MA in Learning and Technology degree facilitated by Dr. Irwin DeVries. The session was framed around three main questions generated by the students including: (1) can higher education (HE) institutions return to how things were before COVID-19 and if not, how can HE institutions set themselves up for success? (2) is the face-to-face experience superior to online learning and has COVID-19 changed this? and, (3) what new technologies are most likely to impact on online learning in the next five years and why.

In the session, Tony taps into his extensive experience nationally and globally in online and blended learning to address these questions and speaks to post-COVID-19 blended and hybrid learning. Building on his blog post, he speaks to a need for increased support staff; the development of a strategy and plan for digital learning and models for choosing appropriate technologies for learning; training and resources for faculty (for example: the DYI UBC site - how to do an instructional video), open access/on-demand learning, choices of what to put online and why. He provided some very encouraging words to students in the MA in Learning and Technology program,

“if you are MALAT students that must be very good news for you because it looks like the job market for people with your qualifications is going to be pretty strong over the next few years” (Bates, May 2020).

We are very thankful to Dr. Bates for making time to share his expertise openly with us as well as the willingness of the MALAT students who were present for the live session to share this recording widely. The recording can be found at