Electro-Learning amidst Covid-19 Lockdown and Related Challenges of Undergraduates in Nigerian Universities

Authors: Oluwatobi Dorcas Adelowo, Tolulope Abiola Allo, Tayo George

Abstract: This paper examined the various electronic learning platforms adopted by undergraduates in Nigerian Universities which include both private and public universities in Nigeria and its related challenges during the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020. The coronavirus’ enormous consequences, which affected all countries and industries, influenced around 91% of the world's students. The objective of this study is to investigate the experiences of private and public university undergraduates in a Nigerian University, to determine whether there is a significant disparity in the accessibility, affordability, and ease of use of the various e-learning platforms that were adopted during the global pandemic lockdown. The study employed the survey method in eliciting useful information from undergraduates in Covenant University, and in the University of Lagos. The population of the study consisted of 374 undergraduates from both schools. Due to the inaccessibility of students whose lecturers were on industrial action by the Academic Staff Union of Universities, the questionnaire was physically distributed to students at Covenant University, while a Google form was generated for students at the University of Lagos. Data was analyzed using descriptive techniques in frequencies, percentages, and linear regression analysis. Results from the study revealed that 68.1% of students at Covenant University utilized more e-learning platforms like Moodle, Coursera, Zoom, and WebEx unlike their counterparts at the University of Lagos who used only Moodle and Zoom with 43.6%. Also, 87.5% of Covenant University undergraduates made use of their laptops mostly for their e-learning classes while 56.4% of their counterparts in the University of Lagos mostly made use of their smartphones. Findings revealed that students from public Universities faced major challenges such as unstable internet, limited financial capability in buying devices such as laptops, and lack of skill and competence in navigating the e-learning platforms while students in the private universities on the contrary had relatively stable internet connectivity, could afford laptops and smart devices and had the requisite skills to properly navigate their e-learning platforms. The study concludes by recommending the provision of substantial financing that will aid in the acquisition of relevant technology to promote and support e-learning in public universities in Nigeria. It also suggested the inclusion of public University students with adequate training on how to navigate the e-learning platforms, thereby equipping them with the requisite skills needed to maximize the benefits of e-learning. The study emphasizes how the use of e-learning can be an effective sustainable learning solution for current and future situations by the main actors, educators, and learners. In the long run, the Nigerian educational system would be better prepared to face future emergencies that may warrant the adoption of remote learning.

Pages: 73-80

DOI: 10.46300/9109.2023.17.9

International Journal of Education and Information Technologies, E-ISSN: 2074-1316, Volume 17, 2023, Art. #9