Most say online learning will lower education quality: poll

Most say online learning will lower education quality: poll

An elementary level schoolgirl takes a lesson online with a smartphone at her home in Pathum Thani on June 1. (Photo by Apichit Jinakul)
An elementary level schoolgirl takes a lesson online with a smartphone at her home in Pathum Thani on June 1. (Photo by Apichit Jinakul)

A large majority of people think online learning will worsen the quality of Thai education and the kindergarten level will be most affected, according to the result of an opinion survey by Suan Dusit Rajabhat University, or Suan Dusit Poll.

The poll was conducted online on June 14-17 on 3,749 teachers, parents and guardians, and schoolchildren throughout the country to gauge their responses to the Education Ministry's policy for schools to teach children online during the Covid-19 pandemic.

A majority -- 63.30% -- of the respondents thought the Thai education system was not ready for online learning and teaching; only 21.31% believed it was ready; and 15.39% were uncertain.

When teachers, guardians and parents, and children were asked what concerned them most about online teaching and learning, with respondents allowed to tick more than one answer, the replies varied as follows:

- Among teachers, 77.18% were concerned about the slow internet and insufficient electronic equipment; 69.74% worried there would be no-one to take care of the children when the parents or guardians were not home; and, 67.31% were concerned the children would not understand the lessons taught online.

- As for parents and guardians, 66.16% worried the children would not concentrate on learning and lack enthusiasm; 64.64% worried the children would not understand the lessons given online; and 61.65% worried the children would not be able to fully understand the lessons.

- Among the children, 74.25% worried they would not fully understand the lessons; 63.47% worried about the lack of interaction with friends; and 62.28% thought they would not be able to learn as much as in classrooms.

- As for respondents among the general public, 65.80% said the children would not concentrate on learning; 61.92% thought the children would not understand the lessons; and 60.26% thought the children might lack necessary equipment such as a notebook computer and access to the internet.

- Asked how the quality of Thai education would be affected by online teaching, 68.52% said the quality would become worse; 25.40% thought it would be the same; and 6.08% thought it would improve.

- Asked what level of education would be most affected by online learning, 33.57% cited kindergarten; 33.77% the elementary school level; 23.51% the secondary school level; and 7.15% the university level.

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