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E-Learning Emergency? A Student-Teacher Dialogue on Sudden Shifts to Online Medical Education

Authors:

A. N. M. Yeung ,

The University of Hong Kong, HK
About A. N. M.
LKS Faculty of Medicine
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C. See

The Chinese University of Hong Kong, HK
About C.
School of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine
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Abstract

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 has forced medical educators worldwide to make sudden and unexpected shifts from face-to-face teaching to e-learning. These emergency changes can be quite unlike coordinated and planned shifts to digital education, and some institutions have found themselves with limited time for preparation of teachers and students, as well as digital infrastructure. This article explores issues raised through a series of student-teacher dialogues. These were conducted online and outside of the formal curriculum development processes as a form of rapid and informal exchange on the subject of the sudden shift to e-learning. Three salient issues were raised from our iterant discussions; the first of which being the generation gap leading to expectation mismatches of students between media they normally consume and those which teachers are able to produce. We propose mutual understanding and sharing of best digital practices as methods to reduce the degree of mismatch. The second issue was the potential benefits and pitfalls of students as co-creators of elearning. Potential benefits of technical proficiency in e-learning production and a peer-teaching element must be balanced with respect for students’ time and effort in any such endeavours. Finally, the issue of wealth inequality within medical student bodies was identified, which is likely to be exacerbated by lack of access to equalising provisions such as university computing facilities. This article serves to highlight issues that teachers and students face in this emergency e-learning era, and to demonstrate how informal student-teacher dialogue can identify issues for further scholarly exploration.

How to Cite: Yeung, A.N.M. and See, C., 2020. E-Learning Emergency? A Student-Teacher Dialogue on Sudden Shifts to Online Medical Education. South-East Asian Journal of Medical Education, 14(2), pp.153–155. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/seajme.v14i2.222
Published on 31 Dec 2020.
Peer Reviewed

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