June 17, 2020
COVID-19 and Online Learning
The implications of COVID-19 in higher education has the potential for creating many disruptive innovations, especially in online learning. Online learning is not a new concept. However, COVID-19 effected over 1.38 billion students when K-12 schools, universities, and colleges were forced to close their doors and move to remote learning (Li & Lalani, 2020). As Cascio (2009) described, this was a future that was “weirder than expected.” No one saw this dramatic shift in education coming, nor were many schools prepared for it. Disruptive innovation becomes a factor as universities and colleges begin planning to further integrate online learning in their strategic plans. Speaking from personal experiences, remote learning is NOT the same as pure online learning. As Li and Lalani discuss, the full benefit of online learning must “go beyond replicating a physical class/lecture through video capabilities (para 15). As an online learning professional, I worry about how online learning will change as universities and colleges use the data from Winter/Spring semester to drive online learning decisions going forward. As Clay Christensen discusses, true innovation in online learning will only work if we don’t use past data from the previous semester to drive strategic plans in the field of online learning (Harvard Business Review, 2012). Instead, research into successful online learning practices must occur. It will be interesting to observe how the quality and vision of online learning will shift as schools realize they survived shifting to remote learning in a crisis.
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Arizona State University (2012). ASU Online named product of the year by Pearson higher ed. https://asunow.asu.edu/content/asu-online-named-product-year-pearson-higher-edLinks to an external site.
Cascio, J. (2009). Futures thinking: The basics. Fast Company. https://www.fastcompany.com/1362037/futures-thinking-basicsLinks to an external site.
Harvard Business Review (2012). Disruptive Innovation Explained [Video]. YouTube. Disruptive Innovation Explained