E-learning in a pandemic era
Exploring the digital gaps and needs of rural secondary schools and remote communities across 6 Nigerian states.
Keywords:COVID-19, digital gaps, digital needs, e-learning, remote communities
The COVID-19 pandemic contributed to a digital economy transition by emphasizing the importance of digital infrastructure while exposing the digital gaps between countries and communities. Inequalities in digital access has impeded educational gains made towards achieving the sustainable development goals. While major studies have been carried out on digital learning there is currently a dearth of knowledge on the digital gaps and needs of students in remote communities in Nigeria. To this end, this study explored the digital gaps and needs of rural secondary schools in remote communities and its implications on e-learning across 6 Nigerian states during the COVID-19 era. The study adopted a concurrent embedded mixed method design approach to collect data from rural secondary schools from 6 Nigerian states. Findings from the study identified lack of ICT strategies and policies in Nigeria, socio-economic status, poor internet connectivity, electricity, and a high poverty level as the major drivers of digital gaps in remote communities.
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