As part of the suite of Government measures to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, all schools, pre-schools and further and higher education settings were closed in mid-March until the end of the academic year. In order to minimise the impact on teaching and learning, all schools were asked to continue to plan lessons and, where possible, provide online resources for students or online lessons where schools were equipped to do so, such as the use of online learning platforms (examples of which include Edmodo, Seesaw, Google Classroom, Aladdin, etc.). Physical classes in universities and higher education facilities were cancelled during the closure, with other arrangements for teaching and learning and other activities put in place. There was a sharp increase in the use of education portals/websites with over one fifth (21%) Communicating with instructors or students using educational websites/portals, an increase of seven percentage points on 2019. See Table 8.1 and Figure 8.1.
Using online learning material other than a complete online course (including audio-visual materials, online learning software, electronic textbooks, etc.) also increased during this time, with one quarter (25%) of internet users using this online resource, compared with 21% in 2019. See Table 8.1 and Figure 8.1.
People were also choosing to upskill during this time using online resources. Nearly one in five (18%) of internet users reported Doing an online course, an increase of five percentage points on 2019. See Table 8.1 and Figure 8.1.
Note that more than one option could be selected by respondents.
|Table 8.1 Percentage of individuals who conducted online learning activities for educational, professional or private purposes in the last 3 months, 2019 and 2020|
|% of individuals|
|Online learning activities|
|Doing an online course||Using online learning material other than a complete online course1||Communicating with instructors or students using educational websites/portals|
|Principal economic status|
|1Examples include audio-visual materials, online learning software, electronic textbooks.|
|Note 1: Data are subject to sampling and other survey errors, which are relatively greater in respect of smaller values.|
|Note 2: Individuals represent all individuals aged 16 years and over.|
|Note 3: n/a denotes breakdown not available for 2019.|
|Note 4: * Sample occurrence too small for estimation, i.e. less than 30.|
|Note 5: Figures in parentheses [ ] indicate percentages based on small numbers, and are, therefore, subject to a wide margin of error.|
|Online learning activity||2019||2020|
|Doing an online course||13||18|
|Using online learning material other than a complete online course||21||25|
|Communicating with instructors or students using educational websites/portals||14||21|
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