How to Find Your Car’s Manual Online

Whether you’ve purchased a used car without a manual or you’ve simply lost the one that came with your car, it isn’t too difficult to find a replacement manual online. Learn more about where to look for car manuals and additional literature for DIY auto repair.

Most automotive manufacturers offer free PDF owner’s manuals online. Each maker’s website is likely to be different, but in general, you can find them by searching for something like “[brand] owner’s manual” and clicking on results that are tied to the maker’s official website. In some cases, you may need to enter in some information about your car in order to access the PDF manual. This information may include your car’s specific year, model and trim level. In other cases, you might need to enter the VIN.

What to Do If the Manufacturer Doesn’t Have It

Some manufacturers only have online versions of user manuals for relatively new models (e.g., those made in the 21st century or those made within the past 10 years). If you can’t find the manual for your model year on the maker’s website, you might be able to find it for sale somewhere else. eBay is one place to look — use specific search terms like “1998 Honda Civic owner’s manual” to produce useful results.

Finding a Paper Copy

Some automakers provide paper copies of a user’s manual for a fee, so if you don’t feel like printing your own or if you just want the original thing in hand, you can try that route. When that isn’t an option, companies like Helm may be able to provide a printed copy for certain auto brands. You could also try calling local dealership’s for your car’s make to see if they have any lying around. Keep in mind, though, that model year dictates manual relevancy, so don’t take just any old manuals they have on hand.

Finding Relevant Manual Information

In theory, you may not need a complete copy of your owner’s manual. If you know pretty much everything there is to know about how to operate your car, instructions for things like how to use the windshield wipers may be irrelevant. But manuals contain some useful information, like maintenance schedules. This is the kind of information you might be able to find via a trusted automotive publisher like Edmunds.

Seeking Out DIY Repair Guides

In most cases, your owner’s manual isn’t going to go very far in depth about your car’s mechanical setup. If you want to learn more about that, you should look to DIY automotive repair guides. Reputable publishers in this area include Chilton and Haynes. The automaker may also publish mechanical guides that are much more substantive than user manuals.

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Online Distance Learning: A Literature Review

29 Sep 2020


This week’s blogpost is a guest post by Dr John L. Taylor , Director of Learning, Teaching and Innovation at Cranleigh School .

Dr Taylor is leading a free CIRL professional development webinar on project-based learning, on 17 November from 4-5pm GMT. The link will be available on CIRL’s Eventbrite page soon and the webinar recording will be added to CIRL’s Resources and Professional Development page .

What does the secondary research literature tell us about distance learning?

This blogpost offers a literature review on online distance learning, which is thematically divided into four sections. I first consider what the literature tells us about the efficacy of online distance learning (section 1) and the importance of building a learning community (section 2). I then discuss what the literature says in response to two questions: ‘Does online distance learning work better for some students?’ (section 3) and ‘Can online distance learning support the development of self-regulated learning?’ (section 4).

In this review, the following key terms are defined as follows:

  • Distance learning: a ‘form of education in which the main elements include physical separation of teachers and students during instruction and the use of various technologies to facilitate student-teacher and student-student communication.’ [1]
  • Online learning: ‘education that takes place over the internet’. [2] This can be subdivided into asynchronous online courses that do not take place in real-time and synchronous online courses in which teacher and student interact online simultaneously. [3]
  • Blended learning: a hybrid mode of interaction which combines face-to-face in-person meetings with online interaction. [4] As blended learning is a hybrid model, either the face-to-face or the online elements may be dominant. So, for example, blended learning can occur when online instructional tools are used to support face-to-face learning in a classroom, or when some face-to-face instruction is interspersed with online learning as part of a longer course.
  • A virtual school: ‘an entity approved by a state or governing body that offers courses through distance delivery – most commonly using the internet’. [5]
  • Self-regulated learning: ‘the modulation of affective, cognitive and behavioural processes throughout a learning experience in order to reach a desired level of achievement’. [6] Self-regulating learning skills have been described as abilities such as planning, managing and controlling the learning process. [7] Processes that occur during self-regulated learning include goal setting, metacognition and self-assessment. [8]

1. The Efficacy of Online Distance Learning

That said, there is also evidence of equivalence across a number of outcome measures. A 2004 meta-analysis by Cathy Cavanaugh et al of 116 effect sizes measured across 14 K-12 web-delivered distance learning programmes between 1999 and 2004 found that there was no significant difference in outcomes between virtual and face-to-face schools. [10]

A 2015 study by Heather Kauffmann explored factors predictive of student success and satisfaction with online learning. [11] Kauffmann notes that several studies have found that online learning programmes lead to outcomes that are comparable to those of face-to-face programmes.

VanPortfliet and Anderson note that research into hybrid instruction indicates that students achieve outcomes that match, if not exceed, outcomes from other instructional modalities. In particular, academic achievement by students in hybrid programmes is consistently higher than that of students engaged in purely online programmes. [12]

The ongoing discussion in the literature suggests that it is difficult to draw general conclusions about the efficacy of online learning as such, not least because it constitutes in significant ways a distinctive mode of learning when compared with real-world instruction. It is perhaps better, then, to look more specifically at questions such as the comparative strengths and challenges of moving to virtual schooling, the conditions which need to be in place for it to function well and the manner in which this transition is experienced by learners with different capabilities.

2. The Importance of Building a Learning Community

A helpful summary of research about online learning by Jonathan Beale at CIRL contains an outline of principles concerning successful online distance learning programmes.The summary explores research-based recommendations for effective teaching and learning practices in online and blended environments made by Judith V. Boettcher and Rita-Marie Conrad in their 2016 work, The Online Teaching Survival Guide: Simple and Practical Pedagogical Tips . [13] A central emphasis of these recommendations is that successful online learning depends upon the formation of an online learning community, and this is only possible if there is regular online interaction between teachers and students:

Why is presence so important in the online environment? When faculty actively interact and engage students in a face-to-face classroom, the class evolves as a group and develops intellectual and personal bonds. The same type of community bonding happens in an online setting if the faculty presence is felt consistently. [14]

The significance of relationship building is noted in the Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute’s Teacher Guide to Online Learning :

Creating a human-to-human bond with your online students, as well as with their parents/guardians and the student’s local online mentor, is critical in determining student success in your online course. This can be accomplished through effective individual and group communication, encouraging engagement in the course, productive and growth-focused feedback, and multiple opportunities for students to ask questions and learn in a way that is meaningful to them. [15]

Research into virtual learning emphasises the importance of the connection between students and their teachers. This can be lost if there is no ‘live’ contact element at all. As Beale notes, this does not necessarily mean that every lesson needs to include a video meeting, though there is a beneficial psychological impact of knowing that the teacher is still in contact and regular face-to-face online discussions can enable this. There are other forms – a discussion thread which begins during a lesson and is open throughout can perform the same role, though in cases where meeting functions are available, students may be directed to use these rather than email.

As well as the teacher-student relationship, student-student links are important. There is evidence of improved learning when students are asked to share their learning experiences with each other. [16]

Beale’s research summary also emphasizes the importance of a supportive and encouraging online environment. Distance learning is challenging for students and the experience can be frustrating and de-motivating if technology fails (e.g., if work gets lost or a live session cannot be joined due to a connection failure or time-zone difference). More than ever, teachers need to work at providing positive encouragement to their students, praising and rewarding success and acknowledging challenges when they exist. It is also valuable if teachers can identify new skills that students are acquiring – not least skills in problem-solving, using information technology and resilience – and encourage their classes when they see evidence of these.

3. Does online distance learning work better for some students?

Given that, more or less by definition, students participating in an online distance learning programme will be operating with a greater degree of autonomy, it may be expected that those who will be best suited to online learning will be those with the greatest propensity for self-regulated learning. This view is advanced in a review of the literature on virtual schools up until 2009, by Michael Barbour and Thomas Reeves:

The benefits associated with virtual schooling are expanding educational access, providing high-quality learning opportunities, improving student outcomes and skills, allowing for educational choice, and achieving administrative efficiency. However, the research to support these conjectures is limited at best. The challenges associated with virtual schooling include the conclusion that the only students typically successful in online learning environments are those who have independent orientations towards learning, highly motivated by intrinsic sources, and have strong time management, literacy, and technology skills. These characteristics are typically associated with adult learners. This stems from the fact that research into and practice of distance education has typically been targeted to adult learners. [17]

Given the lack of evidence noted by Barbour and Reeves, a more cautious conclusion would be that we may expect to find a relationship between outcomes from online distance learning programmes and the propensity of students for self-regulated learning, rather than the conclusion that this capacity is a precondition of success.

Kauffmann notes that students with the capacity for self-regulated learning tend to achieve better outcomes from online courses. This result is not surprising, given that in online learning more responsibility is placed on the learner. [18]

A 2019 review of 35 studies into online learning by Jacqueline Wong et al explores the connection between online learning and self-regulated learning. The study highlights the significance of supports for self-regulated learning such as the use of prompts or feedback in promoting the development and deployment of strategies for self-regulated learning, leading to better achievement in online learning:

In online learning environments where the instructor presence is low, learners have to make the decisions regarding when to study or how to approach the study materials. Therefore, learners’ ability to self-regulate their own learning becomes a crucial factor in their learning success … [S]upporting self-regulated learning strategies can help learners become better at regulating their learning, which in turn could enhance their learning performance. [19]

In a 2005 study of ‘Virtual High School’ (VHS), the oldest provider of distance learning courses to high school students in the United States, Susan Lowes notes that the VHS’s pedagogical approach ‘emphasizes student-centered teaching; collaborative, problem-based learning; small-group work; and authentic performance-based assessment’. [20] This approach, Lowes comments, is aligned with a growing body of literature on the characteristics of successful online courses.

Taking a more student-centred approach during online instruction fits with features of the online environment. It is natural to make more use of asynchronous assignments and to expect students to take more responsibility for their study, given that they are not subject to direct supervision in a classroom setting and may be accessing course materials outside of a conventional timetable.

4. Can online distance learning support the development of self-regulated learning?

It may be the case that, even if Barbour and Reeves are correct in claiming that only those students with an ‘independent orientation towards learning’typically achieve successful outcomes from online distance learning programmes, a countervailing relationship obtains insofar as participation in an online distance learning programme may foster the development of the propensity for self-regulated learning.

A controlled study in 2018 by Ruchan Uz and Adem Uzun of 167 undergraduate students on a programming language course compared blended learning with a traditional learning environment.  The study found that, for the purpose of developing self-regulated learning skills, blended instruction was more effective than traditional instruction. [21]

In a 2011 review of 55 empirical studies, Matthew Bernacki, Anita Aguilar and James Byrnes noted that research suggests that:

[T]echnologically enhanced learning environments … represent an opportunity for students to build their ability to self-regulate, and for some, leverage their ability to apply self-regulated learning … to acquire knowledge. [22]

Their review suggests that the use of technologically enhanced learning environments can promote self-regulated learning and that such environments are best used by learners who can self-regulate their learning. [23]

However, an investigation by Peter Serdyukov and Robyn Hill into whether online students do learn independently argues that independent learning requires active promotion as well as a desire to promote autonomy on the part of the instructor and the necessary skills and motivation on the part of students. Where these conditions are not met, the aspiration to autonomy is frustrated, which can lead to negative outcomes from the online learning experience. [24]

Bernacki, Aguilar and Brynes employed an Opportunity-Propensity (O-P) framework. The O-P framework was introduced by Brynes and Miller in a 2007 paper exploring the relative importance of predictors of math and science achievement, where it was described as follows:

This framework assumes that high achievement is a function of three categories of factors: (a) opportunity factors (e.g., coursework), (b) propensity factors (e.g., prerequisite skills, motivation), and (c) distal factors (e.g., SES). [25]

It is plausible to suggest that the two-way relationship between self-regulated learning skills and successful participation in an online distance learning programme can be explained in terms of the opportunities online distance learning offers in three areas: first, to develop self-regulated learning skills afforded by the online distance learning environment; second, the prior propensity of learners to self-regulate their learning; and third, changes in distal factors (such as exclusive mediation of learning through online platforms to IT and parental involvement in learning).

Summary of Secondary Research Literature

The following points can be made about online distance learning based on the foregoing review:

  • Successful online learning depends upon the formation of an online learning community. Regular online interaction between teachers and students is important in the development of an online community. Teacher-student and student-student links are part of this.
  • Students with the capacity for self-regulated learning tend to achieve better outcomes from online courses.
  • There is some evidence that online distance learning programmes can be used to help develop self-regulated learning skills. This is provided that both teacher and student are motivated by the goal of building autonomy .
  • There is support in the research literature for using collaborative, problem-based learning and authentic performance-based assessment within online learning programmes.

Coda: review and revise

It is fair to say that the move to an entirely distance learning programme is the single biggest and most rapid change that many educators will ever have had to make. As with any large-scale rapid and fundamental innovation, it is hard to get everything right. We need to be willing to revise and refine. This may mean adapting to use a new software platform across the whole school if problems are found with existing provision, or it may be an adjustment to expectations about lesson length or frequency of feedback. Keeping distance learning programmes under review is also essential as we look towards a possible future in which it will co-exist with face-to-face teaching.

This literature review is an edited version of the literature review in my report, ‘An Investigation of Online Distance Learning at Cranleigh’ , September 2020, which can be downloaded here . In that report, the literature review is used to establish several conclusions about the implementation of online learning programmes. Those findings are compared to trends discernible in the responses to a questionnaire survey of three year groups at Cranleigh School (years 9, 10 and 12). The programme of study for these year groups was designed to provide continuity of delivery of the curriculum, in contrast to the programmes developed for years 11 and 13, where a customised programme of study was developed to bridge the gap created by the withdrawal of national public examinations during the summer term of 2020.

[1] ‘Distance learning | education | Britannica’ .

[2] Joshua Stern, ‘Introduction to Online Teaching and Learning’ .

[3] Fordham University, ‘Types of Online Learning’ .

[5] Michael K. Barbour and Thomas C. Reeves, ‘The reality of virtual schools: A review of the literature’, Computers & Education 52.2 (2009), pp. 402-416.

[6] Maaike A. van Houten‐Schat et al , ‘Self‐regulated learning in the clinical context: a systematic review’, Medical Education 52.10 (2018), pp. 1008-1015.

[7] René F. Kizilcec, Mar Pérez-Sanagustín & Jorge J. Maldonado, ‘Self-regulated learning strategies predict learner behavior and goal attainment in Massive Open Online Courses’, Computers & education 104 (2017), pp. 18-33.

[8] Sofie M. M. Loyens, Joshua Magda and Remy M. J. P. Rikers, ‘Self-directed learning in problem-based learning and its relationships with self-regulated learning’, Educational Psychology Review 20.4 (2008), pp. 411-427.

[9] Paul VanPortfliet and Michael Anderson, ‘Moving from online to hybrid course delivery: Increasing positive student outcomes’, Journal of Research in Innovative Teaching 6.1 (2013), pp. 80-87.

[10] Cathy Cavanaugh et al , ‘The effects of distance education on K-12 student outcomes: A meta-analysis’, Learning Point Associates/North Central Regional Educational Laboratory (NCREL), 2004.

[11] Heather Kauffman, ‘A review of predictive factors of student success in and satisfaction with online learning’, Research in Learning Technology 23 (2015).

[12] VanPortfliet & Anderson, op. cit., pp 82 – 83 .

[13] Judith V. Boettcher & Rita-Marie Conrad, The Online Teaching Survival Guide: Simple and Practical Pedagogical Tips (Second Edition; San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, 2016).

[14] Ibid. Boettcher & Conrad’s chapter is reprinted with permission in this article , from which the quotation is taken.

[15] Michigan Virtual’s ‘Teacher Guide to Online Learning’ .

[16] Joan Van Tassel & Joseph Schmitz, ‘Enhancing learning in the virtual classroom’, Journal of Research in Innovative Teaching 6.1 (2013), pp. 37-53.

[17] Michael K. Barbour & Thomas C. Reeves, ‘The reality of virtual schools: A review of the literature’, Computers & Education 52.2 (2009), pp. 402-416.

[18] Heather Kauffman, ‘A review of predictive factors of student success in and satisfaction with online learning’, Research in Learning Technology 23 (2015).

[19] Jacqueline Wong et al , ‘Supporting self-regulated learning in online learning environments and MOOCs: A systematic review’, International Journal of Human–Computer Interaction 35.4-5 (2019), pp. 356-373.

[20] ‘Online Teaching and Classroom Change – CiteSeerX’ .

[21] Ruchan Uz & Adem Uzun, ‘The Influence of Blended Learning Environment on Self-Regulated and Self-Directed Learning Skills of Learners’, European Journal of Educational Research 7.4 (2018), pp. 877-886.

[22] Matthew L. Bernacki, Anita C. Aguilar & James P. Byrnes, ‘Self-regulated learning and technology-enhanced learning environments: An opportunity-propensity analysis’, Fostering self-regulated learning through ICT , IGI Global (2011), pp. 1-26.

[24] Peter Serdyukov & R. Hill, ‘Flying with clipped wings: Are students independent in online college classes’, Journal of Research in Innovative Teaching 6.1 (2013), pp. 52-65.

[25] James P. Byrnes & David C. Miller, ‘The relative importance of predictors of math and science achievement: An opportunity–propensity analysis’, Contemporary Educational Psychology 32.4 (2007), pp. 599-629.

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The Covid-19 pandemic had pressured institutions around the world to move to online learning. Students, teachers, and education administrators were not prepared for the sudden change in the mode of delivery. As a result, there have been issues with online learning. Many studies have been conducted in the last two years to explore the matter. In this paper, the author will attempt to provide a literature review of previous studies about barriers to online learning both before and after the pandemic. A comprehensive list of barriers is presented. As a result of the review, there is not much difference in the barrier to online learning before and after the pandemic. This paper aims to present a broad overview of the topic so educators and school administrators can develop a plan to enhance the quality of online education in the future.

Barriers to Online Education , E-Learning , Distance Education , Covid-19 Pandemic

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review literature in online learning

1. Introduction

Online and distance education has been around for a couple of decades now. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic in the last two years (2020 and 2021), we see a significant shift to online learning from the traditional mode of delivery. Many students and parents experienced online learning for the first time. Because of the lockdown in many places, online learning became the solution for kindergarten to doctoral level learners. Despite the many benefits that online learning brings to our education system, barriers to the effectiveness of this delivery mode are still present. This paper will summarize barriers to online learning and, thus, serve as a foundation for educators and education administrators to develop strategies to improve this learning mode in the future.

This paper will provide a broad literature review of current and past research on the topics of barriers to online learning. It will cover various education levels, including K-12 and Higher Education in many countries around the world. Several papers from the pre-pandemic time are also being included. The novelty of this paper is attempting to see if there is any major difference between the barrier to online learning before and after the pandemic.

2. Barriers to Online Learning Pre-Pandemic

E-learning or online learning refers to the usage of modern information and communication technologies to deliver educational content to students. This learning mode can overcome physical distance [1]. The phenomenon of e- learning became popular in the early 1990s due to the rapid evolution of the Internet. Despite the many benefits that eLearning brings to the educational landscape, some drawbacks yet need to be addressed. Muilenbug and Berge (2005) conducted a study to explore barriers to online learning; this is one of the earliest explorations of the topic. The context of the study was the United States. The study result identified eight barriers: a) administrative issues, b) social interaction, c) academic skills, d) technical skills, e) learner motivation, f) time and support for studies, g) cost and access to the Internet, and h) technical problems [2]. However, there might be changes to the barriers since the paper was first published because the eLearning industry has been evolving rapidly, according to Bezovski and Poorani [1].

In another study immediately before the pandemic, Aljaraideh and Bataineh (2019) researched the barrier to online learning for students in Jordan [3]. Four hundred students were asked to fill out questionnaires. The researchers conducted a pilot study on the first 50 respondents to ensure the reliability of the questionnaire. The authors then used quantitative methods to analyze the collected data. The findings showed that technological infrastructure was the primary barrier to online learning. Indeed, online learning was a new phenomenon in developing countries [3].

Aljaraideh and Bataineh (2019) also pointed out that first- and second-year students faced more significant barriers than third- and fourth-year students. This phenomenon can be explained as new students did not have much technical experience compared to their senior peers. Female students faced more barriers for the first two years than their male counterparts. However, it is the opposite in the last two years when male students faced more barriers. Online learning was new in Jordan, which explained the lack of technological infrastructure; especially, this study was conducted before the Covid-19 pandemic. Other similar studies below also identify an interaction between the student’s gender and the year variable.

Bates (2017) published a report on online education in Canada [4]. According to the author, Canada has an extensive online and distance education history. Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, online education enrolment had grown rapidly in North America. As of 2017, almost all Canadian post-secondary institutions (except Quebec) offer distance learning in various fields of study. Canadian institutions have been using the Internet, learning management systems, interactive lectures, social media, mobile devices, and synchronous sessions to deliver online courses. Many institutions already had comprehensive strategies for expanding online education before the pandemic as they recognized the importance of online education. Although the country has a long history of online learning, it still faces several issues. The main barriers pointed out by Canadian institutions were lack of resources and lack of specialists in learning technology. This barrier is related to online learning administrative support. As one sample solution to the problem, the provincial government of British Columbia has focused on developing Open Education Resources (OER), which can be valuable support for online education. With open resources, it is easier for students to have access to online resources [4].

3. Barriers to Online Learning during the Pandemic

Baticulon et al. (2021) studied the barrier to online learning in the context of medical students in the Philippines [5]. The authors collected data using the electronic survey in mid-2020 from 3670 medical students. Their survey includes various questions ranging from multiple choices on the Likert scale to open- ended questions. The majority of participants own smartphones and laptops or desktop computers. Less than half (41%) of the students were “physically and mentally capable of engaging in online learning” [5]. The barriers identified are adjustment to the online learning style, balance with family responsibilities, and communication issues between learners and instructors. First, since the pandemic came very suddenly, students, faculties, school administrators, and the curriculum were not yet ready to switch the delivery mode. Second, studying at home made it harder for students to balance family responsibilities [5].

Moreover, many students did not have a dedicated studying area at home. Thus, students got interfered from other family members. Third, communication issue between learners and teachers was raised. A possible explanation was that both the learners and teachers were unprepared for the transition [5].

Van and Thi (2021) conducted a mixed-method study to determine the barrier to online learning in Vietnam during the Covid-19 pandemic [6]. The sample size was 1165 students from various universities and high schools in Vietnam. The obstacles identified include lack of social interaction, cost and access to the Internet, learner motivation, and family distraction. Contradicting Aljaraideh and Bataineh’s study, technological skill is not a significant problem for the students. Students were somewhat prepared by having basic technical skills, prior IT training that they received in the previous years and reviewing instructional training videos for critical online learning platforms. The cost of accessing the Internet includes investment in hardware such as laptops or computers, or mobile devices. For students from rural areas, accessing the Internet can be more challenging compared to students from urban areas. The other factors, such as lack of interaction, student motivation, and family distraction, are consistent with other studies in this review [6].

In another case in Southeast Asia, the study conducted by Octaberlina and Muslimin (2020) explored the barrier to online learning for English as a Foreign Language (EFL) students in Indonesia [7]. The authors conducted a mixed- method survey of 25 EFL students. The identified barriers include unfamiliarity with e-learning, slow internet connection, and physical condition such as eye strain. The geographical nature of Indonesia can explain the issue with an internet connection. The country's population is spread out over a large number of islands [7].

Regarding the Learning Management System (LMS), many students were unfamiliar with Google Classroom, which was used at their institution. A proposed solution is to have training of the LMS before actual learning, reduce the file size for the learning materials to accommodate the slow internet connection, and ensure breaks during online learning sessions. Regarding reducing the file size of learning materials, a suggestion is to use audio instead of video since students can listen to the audio lecture while doing other things. Moreover, text and audio transmission will be better compared to videos with a slow internet connection. Participants in this research pointed out several distractions, such as online games and YouTube. Indeed, this might not be the case with students with a slow internet connection. The authors also discussed physical conditions such as eye constraints when looking at the computer screen for a prolonged period [7].

Anastasakis, Triantafyllou, and Petridis (2021) performed qualitative research to identify barriers to online learning during the pandemic in Greece [8]. The author used a qualitative survey to collect data from 2093 undergraduate students. The discovery is consistent with other studies on the same topic in different countries. The majority of the participants did not have any experience with online learning. Only half of the students were confident with online learning. Their finding confirms other research results regarding internet connection issues and lack of social interactions. The switch to online learning posed a significant challenge to universities worldwide. Other barriers related to the lecturers’ online teaching skills; are lecturers’ technical skills, not having synchronous sessions, not uploaded teaching materials, confusing timetables, and using various platforms [8]. As stated by Baticulon et al. (2021), both students and teachers had to switch to online learning in a short period [5]. Thus, the institution needs continuous training to help teachers adapt to the new environment. Other barriers are the administrative issue, the appropriateness of course content for online delivery, distractions in the environment, learners’ characteristics (i.e., time management, shyness, and disability), and engagement during online classes. According to the authors, such as Greece, these barriers exist in countries where distance or online learning is not well-established. Many universities did not have strategic plans to promote online or distance education before the pandemic. According to Moore (1989), as cited in Anastasakis, Triantafyllou, and Petridis (2021), effective education will require three types of interactions: learner-content (LC), learner-instructor (LI), and learner-learner (LL) [9]. However, due to the sudden switch to online learning, these interactions are either not met or merely met. According to the finding, several subjects that require lab work might not be appropriate to be fully online.

Another study was conducted to discover the barriers to online learning from students in Bangladesh by Islam and Habib (2021) [10]. The authors applied the quantitative method by surveying 394 university students with a semi-structured online questionnaire. The study includes 50.5% undergraduate students, 48% master students and 1.5% doctoral students. Moreover, 24.9% of students come from rural areas, 40.6% from suburban areas, and 34.5% from urban areas. About two-thirds of the respondents were male. The finding revealed a couple of themes 1) environment and situational barriers, 2) e-learning barriers, 3) psychological barriers, and 4) disruption of online learning adoption [10]. The barriers, according to Islam and Habib (2021), include:

Roslan and Halim (2021) performed a mixed-method study to explore the enablers and barriers to online learning in Malaysia [11]. The authors conducted a cross-sectional study of 178 participants and in-depth interviews with 10 participants from public medical schools in Malaysia. Several barriers emerged from the study, although all students own at least one learning device. First, 22.5% of students have no learning space at home. This issue can cause distraction during online learning. The second barrier is internet access: 21.9% of students have no wi-fi access, and 11.2% have no mobile broadband coverage. The study also found that using low bandwidth applications (such as Whats App and Telegram) and easily accessible platforms (such as YouTube) can help to ease the problem. The use of YouTube is slightly inconsistent with the other studies by Octaberlina and Muslimin (2020) in the neighbouring country of Indonesia [7]. However, both arguments are reasonable. On the one hand, Roslan and Halim (2021) pointed out that YouTube is easily accessible to all students compared to other platforms. On the other hand, Octaberlina and Muslimin (2020) argued that YouTube content could cause a distraction to students. Also, in some cases where students have a slow internet connection, loading video is a challenge [11].

Alshwiah studied the barrier to online learning faced by secondary students in Saudi Arabia [12]. Similar to the above study, mixed methods were used in this research. The first step is interviewing four parents and four students to explore the barriers. It is one of the rare studies that involved parents. Then, the author surveyed 518 respondents on the barriers. Private schools seem to perform better for online learning compared to public schools. Also, consistent with Aljaraideh and Bataineh (2019), female students faced more barriers than male students [3]. Several other barriers were identified, including a lack of computer equipment and high-speed internet connection. Another significant barrier is that the curriculum, which was traditionally used face-to-face, is now delivered online without proper review and redesign. In addition, teachers were not well trained to deliver online classes (online teaching skills). Poor online learning tools can also cause problems for the students: “lack of instructions, difficult navigation, an uninteresting interface, unresponsive website, and disorganized e-content” [12]. Indeed, these reasons are understandable due to a rapid switch to online learning from the traditional delivery mode. A confused grading policy also contributed to the problem, reducing the student’s motivation and productivity.

Kara (2021) conducted a qualitative case study on 44 university students to find out the barriers and enablers of online learning [13]. Data collection techniques include structured and semi-structured interviews with the research participants. Five main themes came out of the analysis: online content, online assignments, online assessments, instructor behaviour & practice, and psychological issues. Moreover, students also felt pressure from taking many online courses. The online content is hard to follow because of a lack of interaction with peers and teachers. The solutions include online video, teleconferencing software for synchronous learning mode, and how content is organized into modules. Students also pointed out that online assessment feedback are critical to their success in online learning. Thus, instructors should provide clear instructions and detailed feedback to students [13].

Regarding instructors’ behaviour, late replies and negative messages can hinder students’ success. This issue indicated that instructors are not prepared for online teaching. The last group on psychological issues is consistent with other studies, and it is about the distraction of learning at home. In general, the author also pointed out that as students take online courses, it positively impacts their mood during the lockdown period [13].

Li et al. (2021) conducted a similar study on postgraduate students in China. The authors pointed out that online learning developed significantly during the pandemic. Online learning platforms provide positive contributions to students learning process at the postgraduate level. The authors are optimistic that the challenge we see will create opportunities for new development in online learning. There are several suggestions from the study. First, teachers must be trained to become more familiar with online teaching. Second, each institution should

Table 1 . Summary of barriers to online learning.

develop and maintain unified or standardized online platforms to avoid confusion for students. Lastly, they also suggested that there should be other platforms to facilitate learning and research for postgraduate students, such as the Online Scientific Research Platform and Online Academic Exchange Platform. As the author stated, these platforms will benefit research activities for postgraduate students [14].

4. Conclusion

The paper has outlined many significant barriers to online learning in various studies from all over the world. It broadly covers cases from advanced nations (e.g., the United States & Canada) where online education has been well-established compared to other nations (e.g., Greece). Some barriers are rooted in online learning itself, such as physical issues like eye constraints when looking at the computer screen for an extended period. A sudden switch caused other barriers to online learning without any preparation due to the pandemic. Table 1 summarizes the barriers found in different studies. No significant difference was found for barriers before and after the pandemic. The limitation of this study is that it cannot cover all literature in the field. However, the literature review seems to be exhausted because the barriers are repeated and relatively consistent with each other. Future research could consider a case study to compare the barriers to online learning in developed countries with better technological infrastructure and underdeveloped countries with poor infrastructure. This paper can contribute positively to online education by listing barriers. It can guide educational administrators, educators, and researchers to understand the problems and develop solutions for the future. Thus, it will enhance the effectiveness of online education and benefit society at large.

Conflicts of Interest

The author declares no conflicts of interest.

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review literature in online learning

The Effectiveness of Online Learning: A Review of the Literature PROCEEDINGS

Karen swan , research center for educational technology, kent state university, united states.

EdMedia + Innovate Learning , 2003 in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA ISBN 978-1-880094-48-8 Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE) , Waynesville, NC

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This paper reviews the literature on the learning effectiveness of asynchronous online environments. It attempts to look beyond the commonly accepted findings of no significant differences in learning outcomes between online and traditional courses to examine that literature in terms of forms of interactivity, exploring learner interactions with course content, instructors, and classmates in online course environments. More recent notions of interactions with computer and course interfaces and virtual interaction are also briefly examined. It concludes with a summary of what the research tells us and its implications for course development and facilitation.

Swan, K. (2003). The Effectiveness of Online Learning: A Review of the Literature. In D. Lassner & C. McNaught (Eds.), Proceedings of ED-MEDIA 2003--World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia & Telecommunications (pp. 2225-2232). Honolulu, Hawaii, USA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved November 24, 2023 from .

© 2003 Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE)

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  • Published: 23 May 2023

Covid-19 distance and online learning: a systematic literature review in pharmacy education

  • Muhaimin Muhaimin 1 ,
  • Akhmad Habibi 2 ,
  • Yasir Riady 3 ,
  • Turki Mesfer Alqahtani 4 ,
  • Anis Yohana Chaerunisaa 1 ,
  • Tommy Tanu Wijaya 5 ,
  • Tiana Milanda 1 ,
  • Farrah Dina Yusop 6 &
  • Nour Awni Albelbisi 6  

BMC Medical Education volume  23 , Article number:  367 ( 2023 ) Cite this article

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The Covid-19 outbreak necessitated the implementation of social distancing mechanisms, such as the enforcement of lockdowns in numerous nations. The lockdown has disrupted many parts of everyday life, but this unusual event has particularly affected education. The temporary closure of educational institutions ushered in dozens of new reforms, including a shift into the distance and online learning. This study investigates the transition from traditional education in physical classrooms to online and distance and online learning in pharmacy education during Covid-19, especially about the challenges and benefits of distance and online learning. We did Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) for literature sources between 2020 and 2022 (n.14). The study elaborates on how the transition has influenced teachers and students of pharmacy education. The research also summarizes several recommendations, which may assist in minimizing the adverse impacts of lockdown and encourage streamlined processes to distance and online learning, particularly in pharmacy education.

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Covid-19, an infectious illness characterized by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, endangered the world quickly due to its highly infectious nature. As of 6 March 2023, there have been more than seven hudred million confirmed cases were documented, with over six million deaths [ 1 ]. The World Health Organization (WHO) labeled the virus a pandemic in March 2020. The pandemic caused havoc on a variety of activities of daily life, triggering governments worldwide to put in place a series of emergency response mechanisms [ 2 , 3 ]. Country leaders imposed temporary closure and enforced extended isolation time, disrupting educational activity around the globe, reducing infection, and flattening the curve to avoid overburdening healthcare services. This resulted in the temporary closure of educational institutions in various parts of the world. The situation affected teachers, students, and their families [ 4 , 5 , 6 ]. Some academic institutions facing closure gradually reopened and began working under distance and online learning methods to keep students on track academically while also taking steps to mitigate the effects of the present health crisis. In the past, infectious disease epidemics have resulted in widespread school closures, with variable levels of success [ 7 ]. At the most basic level, distance learning refers to taking classes away from the college. Although technically a type of distance learning, online learning is more frequently used to describe programs where the instructors are not present simultaneously as the students [ 8 ].

Institutions have been forced into quickly transitioning to distance and online learning approaches mainly based on technology. Many educational stakeholders, such as teachers, students, and school administration staff, have not prepared to face the transition because of the fast switch to distance and online learning [ 9 ]. This transition to remote learning happened in an unexpected situation, leaving little time for teachers, educational staff, and students to prepare, modify, and adjust the learning. The condition brought several problems to the economy and social life. According to UNESCO, the temporary school closures enacted in response to the Covid-19 pandemic have impacted more than a billion students worldwide. Owing to a lockdown in 2020, students from over 50 nations have been kept out of school, accounting for roughly 18% of total registered students [ 10 ]. Many studies have been conducted to understand the impacts of distance and online learning in education due to Covid-19 [ 11 , 12 , 13 ]. However, literature reviews in a specific field of study are still limited and important to understand the broad effects of distance and online learning [ 7 , 9 , 14 ]. This systematic literature review takes an in-depth look at the studies on the influence of the Covid-19 pandemic on a specific field of education. This research examines how the shift from traditional methods to distance and online learning has affected teachers and students in pharmacy education. The impact of the pandemic-based distance and online learning on pharmacy education should be investigated to improve didactical decisions in the future and bridge the gaps to more adaptable but effective online pedagogical approaches. Initially, the focus areas of the literature review were investigated within pharmacy education. Following the focus areas, the distance and online learning challenges and benefits were assessed and elaborated on. Finally, recommendations of the prior studies included in this meta-analysis were concluded.

Related work

Many governments were under pressure to prevent Covid-19 from spreading. This resulted in the temporary closures of many schools and universities [ 15 ]. Others switched to distance and online learning through technology. Viner et al. [ 16 ] did a systematic evaluation to determine the influence of school closures and other social distance techniques on disease rates and virus spread during crises. It was indicated that educational institution temporary closures play an insignificant role in virus transmission reduction. The minor advantages of such restrictions on the spread reduction might quickly be offset by the severe socio-economic implications [ 16 , 17 , 18 ]. The closure can have effects on individuals, families, and society. Therefore, any decision regarding school closures must carefully consider the potential trade-offs and aim to strike a balance between protecting public health and minimizing the adverse impacts on education, economy, and social well-being. As a result, many academic institutions have chosen the less drastic option of converting to distance and online learning [ 19 , 20 ].

Distance learning refers to online instruction systems to create educational materials, provide teaching, and manage programs [ 21 ]. There are two basic types of distance learning: synchronous and asynchronous [ 22 ]. The main goal of distance and online learning is to replicate regular classroom communication approaches. Live webinars and virtual classes are examples of synchronous distance and online learning. On the other hand, asynchronous learning allows for greater flexibility in terms of timing which does not require real-time engagement; materials are provided online. Video recordings and emails are instances of asynchronous learning.

A comprehensive review and meta-analysis of controlled studies on the efficiency and approval of distance and online learning in medical sciences published between January 2000 and March 2020 evaluated students’ understanding, abilities, and satisfaction levels [ 23 ]. The study reported insignificant differences between traditional and distance and online learning regarding usefulness and objective assessments. Distance and online learning obtained a better approval rating in subjective assessments, suggesting that it was preferred to some degree by learners [ 23 ]. Carrillo & Flores [ 24 ] also reviewed the literature on online teaching and learning practices in teacher development between January 2000 and April 2020 to investigate online learning in teacher development and explain its consequences in the sense of the disease outbreak. The review discussed sociological, intellectual, and pedagogical problems and a comprehensive representation of innovation utilized to enhance teaching and learning [ 24 ].

Daoud et al. [ 25 ] performed a comprehensive review that evaluated the academic benefits of providing internet access at home, focusing on equality surrounding household internet access. It discovered several favorable associations between household internet access and the value of education for qualification, personal character, and social life. However, the relationship was not apparent and did not prove causality. Variables affect the aspects of online behaviors, including how technology is integrated and determine the educational value of household internet use [ 25 ]. Di Pietro et al. [ 26 ] published a report in which they attempted to investigate the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic on education. It generated projections regarding the influence and future of learning based on pre and during Covid-19 data. The following are the four critical conclusions drawn from the article: (a) learning is likely to experience a stumbling block; (b) the impact on student achievements is likely to differ with economic factors; (c) social-economic disparity expressed in extreme reactions, less-wealthy families are subjected to greater environmental strain; (d) the broadening social inequality could have long-lasting effects [ 26 ].

Some virtual cases of emergency learning methods have been chastised for failing to follow basic pedagogical principles and guidelines [ 27 ]. Several studies have raised concerns regarding the possible negative consequences of rushing to introduce educational technology changes without first assessing their impact [ 27 , 28 ]. Furthermore, the move to online education and distance and online learning technologies has sparked worries about spying and security and influenced students’ lifestyles [ 29 ]. In this research context, selected studies were diverse, from quantitative to qualitatitve approaches [ 30 ]. Because this phenomenon is still new, there is a lack of reflection on the pandemic digital revolution’s direct impact on postsecondary learning and its benefits, drawbacks, and future consequences.

The current research, a systematic literature review, follows the principles outlined in the preferred reporting items for systematic review and meta-analysis (PRISMA) procedures [ 31 , 32 ], which include five stages: search, screening, eligibility, initial inclusion, and inclusion. PRISMA is a standard approach to assist researchers in transparently informing the study, steps, and results within the context of the systematic literature review [ 33 ].

Research questions

This research investigates the effects of Covid-19 distance and online learning on pharmacy education. Four research questions were proposed: (1) what are the focus areas of the literature review? (2) what are the challenges of distance and online learning in pharmacy education? (3) what are the benefits of distance and online learning pharmacy education? (4) what recommendations were made?

The research questions were a basic guideline for determining the most popular search terms. The search includes terms synonymous with or closely linked to the main search phrases. The search was conducted using Science Direct, supported by Google Scholar search. The relevant search terms were used: “Distance learning in pharmacy education Covid 19,” “online education in pharmacy education Covid 19,” and “Technology integration in pharmacy education Covid-19.” The findings varied depending on the phrase combinations. However, in general, 17 to 81 papers (Table  1 ) were obtained each search, with the number growing relevant to the topics. Related phrases were gathered in all publications depending on the search. The terms sued in the search were determined through an in-depth discussion among the authors. We limited the terms so that future researchers can adapt this study for further investigation. The search limit provides narrow results for effective and efficient work for the most relevant answers to the research problems [ 34 ].

Articles published after 2020 were kept in the study. Only works from high-quality journals were included; we selected the articles from indexed journals in Web of Science or Scopus databases. We initially reviewed the selected papers against Elsevier’s abstract and reference repository, Scopus, to verify that they were of top standard and didn’t relate to fraudulent publications. We also double-checked that they were in the Scopus indexation for the SJR, a measure of academic journals’ scientific impact. Furthermore, the publications were evaluated using Beall’s List, a list comprising predatory accessible publications that do not conduct an adequate review process.

PRISMA procedures

A reference list of scholarly papers directly referencing Covid-19 online learning: A comprehensive literature review in pharmacy education was created after merging these lists. After the first search or first phase, 137 scholarly publications were presented (Table  1 ). By removing duplicated results, we were able to screen for them. Microsoft Word was used as a tool in the duplication removal procedure. We went through each repeated title and removed them one by one. The redundancy led to 54 academic papers being sent for additional review, with 83 being deleted. Further, the step included the following elimination process; the articles should address technology integration in pharmacy education during Covid-19 distance learning, inform findings in English, be empirical studies (research articles), and be published from 2020 to April 1st, 2022. From the process, 47 abstracts were dropped, and the remaining 36 articles were for eligibility and inclusion (Fig.  1 ).

figure 1

PRISMA flow diagram of the study

Following the initial screening, a review-coding method was performed using Macros in Microsoft Words for the abstracts, with the process documented by writing “included” 1st initial inclusion in the review box. After that, we added some information for every abstract, and the coding was done in a new draft where all the initial abstracts were included. The Macros [ 35 , 36 ] were used to encode and extract the selected papers [ 37 ]. Macros were chosen because of their efficiency and functionality [ 35 ]. Tables were created to manage the comments and metadata. The study’s aim, method, study site/ population, and findings are listed in the tables. Four authors discussed and did the coding and combined documents into one before extracting the comments for analysis. The Macros were obtained for free at .

In the end, 14 articles were collected, examined, and reviewed. The criteria for inclusion in this systematic review were accessible articles in the context of distance education during Covid-19 in the field of pharmacy education. Meanwhile, the exclusion criteria included articles that were not in the context of Covid-19 (n.6), pharmacy education, and distance and online learning. Besides, inaccessible articles (n.7) and articles with insufficient information (n.9) regarding the topic were also excluded.

Results and discussion

The results of this literature review are presented. The findings of every research topic are examined in depth. The focuse of the reviewed articles is presented in Table  2 .

In the selected investigations, most educational institutions moved to online learning. The quality requirements listed in Table  3 were used to construct 14 studies.

Area of focus

In this study, 14 publications considered the effect of COVID-19 on pharmacy education, specifically the technological change they sparked, distance and online learning challenges and benefits, and the recommendations for future studies. Eight papers discussed students’ and faculty’s experiences with remote learning and the participants’ perspectives on its possible benefits and drawbacks. Besides, four publications provided remote learning solutions or tested the performance of a specific technology. Three articles discussed educational policies considering the pandemic and examined the new approach to teaching and learning activities. Two papers investigated how the closure and subsequent transformation to technology-based education compounded achievement gaps. The gaps were revealed between students from lower-income households who lacked internet access and devices and those from higher-income families with devices and easy access to the Internet.

The key challenges can be summarized in the following points: disparity in accessibility, training insufficiency , lack of communication, technical issues, pressure, work, and confidence, and lack of student involvement, technical knowledge, and performance evaluatio n.

There is a disparity in accessibility for pharmacy students, typically linked to family income [ 42 , 45 , 46 , 51 ], discussed in four articles from the review sources. The shift to distance and online learning worsened the disparities between wealthy and disadvantaged pharmacy students. Students studying pharmacy in less affluent areas have little or no access to supporting devices and the Internet [ 42 , 45 ]. Students from low-income families were reported to have less skill and knowledge of technology than students from high-income families with strong economic backgrounds [ 38 , 41 ]. The inequality goes to institutions located in rural areas, which are under-equipped compared to institutions located in cities or urban areas [ 52 ], resulting in different challenges faced by each type of institution.

While technology can enhance the learning experience, it cannot completely replace it, especially in pharmacy professions requiring hands-on laboratory training that indeed produces training insufficiency [ 44 , 48 ]. The phenomenon is especially true in health-related fields, such as pharmacy. The papers on pharmacy education emphasized the importance of hands-on experience and how secondary knowledge derived through simulation, presentation recordings, or online meetings through video conferencing cannot replace the experience.

Because of the depreciation or lack of physical interaction and the intrinsic vagueness of textual exchanges, forming and maintaining connections and forging communication between students, their classmates, and their teachers became increasingly challenging [ 38 ]. With the inexistence of visible touch and the capacity to observe students in classrooms, teachers and instructors have a more challenging time explaining directions and evaluating student response, involvement, and participation. These lack of communication challenges have been revealed in three articles within this literature review [ 38 , 40 , 45 ].

Technical issues such as Internet or Wi-Fi access, tool malfunctions, and stream stability might obstruct communication [ 42 , 45 , 51 ]. As the pandemic spread over the globe, accessibility to a dependable internet connection became increasingly vital in the last year, and quite enough of day-to-day life shifted from in-person to online. Many students, however, have suffered from technological challenges since the start of Covid 19, and existing disparities have indeed been exacerbated by the lack of consistent accessibility [ 42 , 45 , 51 ].

Pressure, work, and confidence were all impacted by the students’ and teachers’ forced and quick transfer to remote learning. Many pharmacy students and faculty members faced financial and social anxiety due to the lockdown, which indirectly impacted their performance. Academic employees, for example, had to deal with increased or even quadrupled workloads. Extended time without face-to-face social interaction can also harm one’s mental health.

Technical knowledge is the next challenge of the current study [ 42 , 45 , 46 , 51 ]. Many educational institutions, schools, and universities were surprised by this rapid and forced digital change, giving educational leaders limited time to educate their professional personnel. The complex evidence and reality left non-tech-aware teachers and instructors unprepared and unequipped to work with complex technological-based activities. Teachers’ lack of technical expertise and prior experience using online tools are also challenges [ 42 , 51 ]. In many circumstances, the incapacity of faculty members to use technology hampered the success of distance and online learning.

Other difficulties include a lack of student involvement and performance evaluatio n [ 40 , 41 , 42 , 45 , 51 ]. Student engagement was occasionally weak due to dependency on recorded meetings, limitation of intention, and stress produced by using the devices. There was also weariness from staring at screens for long periods, isolated thoughts, and melancholy from a limited personal touch [ 40 , 42 ]. Teachers faced problems revising learning assessments to fairly record student academic performance and achievements [ 51 ], which is challenging during distance and online learning, especially for pharmacy students.

Other challenges might also be faced during distance and online learning due to Covid-19. The quality of online and distance learning in pharmacy education is one of them, and it can be a major issue. The government’s educational policy makes no explicit mention of distance and learning. Lack of quality control, development of e-resources, and content delivery can be present. This issue needs to be addressed in further work, especially in pharmacy education, so that all stakeholders can take advantage of the advantages of high-quality distance and online education. One should consider developing and improving the quality of learning for future pandemics.

This stage highlights the benefits of digital change in pharmacy education for more opportunities in the future of education. There are a number of benefits [ 39 , 41 , 42 , 45 , 47 , 49 , 50 ] informed by sources included in this systematic literature review, namely bridging the gap between time and place, communication effectiveness, information transition, and cost-effectiveness.

Distance and online learning bridge the gap between time and place , that gives pharmacy students and teachers the freedom to listen to academic lectures and speeches from the coziness of their living rooms or from anywhere else [ 42 , 47 , 50 ]. Due to the time, it also enables pupils to self-regulate their education and progress at their own pace. Distance and online learning give students the opportunities to listen to their lectures from the comfort of their own homes or from anywhere else. Because of the adaptability enabled by elements such as recording, distance and online learning also helps students to self-regulate their learning and continue at their speed. Online learning allows for a more modern and practical way of communication [ 39 , 41 , 47 , 49 , 50 ]. Significant debates might be addressed during courses, and participants can profit from these talks by observing or engaging in chat.

Distance and online learning facilitate communication effectiveness because participants shouldn’t have to talk face to face or deal with the anxiety that comes with talking in front of a live audience, which encourages more conversation. Parents of young children can also benefit from online learning by becoming more active in their children’s education [ 39 , 45 , 47 , 49 ]. The pressures of the pandemic to shift to digital and remote educational models in teaching revealed flaws in the approach and compelled lecturers to consider and evaluate present and prior instructional approaches, offering a glimpse into what educational technology could look like, encouraging didactical advancement and accelerating changes in technology-based education. The process can be considered a catalyst for curricular and classroom improvement [ 39 , 49 , 50 ].

The employment of simulations and other approaches for educational goals and the deployment of online learning are seen as beneficial and adequate, if not comprehensive, substitutes for traditional learning [ 39 , 41 , 42 , 45 , 47 , 49 , 50 ]. It met the goal of continuing to provide instruction in the face of the epidemic while also assisting pupils in meeting their expectations. Distance and online learning also help increase information transmission , with additional benefits of cost-effectiveness . Students are exposed to new and relevant technologies by integrating technology into education [ 39 , 45 , 49 ].

Recommendations and suggestions

The solution is raising and sustaining their motivation to promote morale and battle any lockdown-induced stress or worry. Accessible online learning portals are for institutions in pharmacy education. Generating and accepting feedback from learners to ensure the quality of online learning is another piece of advice made by the existing literature in pharmacy education [ 39 , 42 , 43 , 45 , 49 ]. They are examining the outcomes of distance and online learning and commenting on the distinctions between it and traditional education to identify which components are sustainable and fit the expectations placed on pharmacy education in general by the pandemic situation.

The current study also helps lecturers use effective instructional strategies and allows educational institutions to enhance online instructional resources continuously [ 53 , 54 ]. Pharmacy students comprehend the required courses and sense the connection of the study content to the actual world. Teachers must set clear expectations and establish course objectives and the value of the syllabus to accomplish this [ 39 , 49 ]. Early in the academic year, they must also define their roles and duties as instructors and facilitators [ 43 , 45 ]. Furthermore, authorities should aim to assess and prevent any dangers or disadvantages of economic or workload discrepancies because of this rapid transition from traditional learning to distance and online learning during crises like Covid-19 [ 55 ].

Another piece of advice is to reassess and rethink educational practices and formulate guidance to steer the shifts to online and distance learning and make necessary infrastructural improvements [ 56 , 57 ]. The activities are designed to familiarize students and professors with technology, develop their competence, and equip them to deal with technological challenges that may arise during online lectures [ 49 ]. This will also aid in the effective use of technology to fulfill its full potential in online education. Finally, it is critical to provide underequipped pupils with the essential tools to participate in online communications, such as devices and solid internet access [ 39 , 45 ].

Conclusion and future work

Covid-19 has a major effect on the world and how people arrange themselves in the actual world. It has revealed systemic flaws inside institutions and resulted in lengthy changes. This was also true in the educational system. This assessment aimed to examine and assess the impact of these developments on pharmacy education. In total, 14 articles regarding distance and online learning during Covid-19 were discussed. The current study uses the PRISMA approach to outline the findings through 5 steps (search, screening, eligibility, initial inclusion, and inclusion). To fill the gap of prior studies in pharmacy education, we examined the change in learning from traditional methods to distance and online learning, affecting all related stakeholders. The impact of pandemics on pharmacy education should be more elaborated for future research for the betterment of education, especially pharmacy education. In short, we focus the presentation of the study on the focus areas of the literature, benefits, and challenges of distance and online learning during Covid-19 in pharmacy education.

Availability of data and materials

The datasets used and/or analysed during the current study available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.

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We thank Universitas Padjadjaran, Universitas Jambi, Universitas Terbuka, Beijing Normal University, and Universiti Malaya to support the research.

This research is fully funded by Universitas Padjajaran.

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Faculty of Pharmacy, Universitas Padjadjaran, Bandung, West Java, Indonesia

Muhaimin Muhaimin, Anis Yohana Chaerunisaa & Tiana Milanda

Universitas Jambi, Jambi, Indonesia

Akhmad Habibi

Universitas Terbuka, Banten, Indonesia

Yasir Riady

Jazan University, Jazan, Saudi Arabia

Turki Mesfer Alqahtani

Beijing Normal University, Beijing, China

Tommy Tanu Wijaya

Universiti Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

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Conceptualization—MM. contributed to conceptualization. Introduction—MM, TTW, and YR contributed to introduction. Methodology—AH, AC, and TM contributed to methodology. Literature Review—all authors contributed to literature review. Results—AH, TMA, MM, and YR contributed to the results. Data Curation— AH, MM, and YR contributed to data curation. Project Administration—MM, AC, and TM contributed to project administration. Writing (Original Draft)—MM, AH, TMA, TTW, FDY, NAA and YR contributed to writing the original data. AH, FDY, and NAA contirubuted to the revision of the writing.

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Muhaimin, M., Habibi, A., Riady, Y. et al. Covid-19 distance and online learning: a systematic literature review in pharmacy education. BMC Med Educ 23 , 367 (2023).

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