• Posted on: 7 November 2022

Internet problems, lack of quiet spaces top challenges to remote learners—YAFS5

Problems with internet access and finding a quiet place to study were the two main difficulties experienced by young remote learners during the pandemic, based on the results of the 2021 Young Adult Fertility and Sexuality Study (YAFS5).

The YAFS5 asked students aged 15-24 enrolled in the School Year (S.Y.) 2020-2021 or Academic Year (A.Y.) about their learning modalities and how often they encountered a list of problems regarding remote learning, as adopted from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) Global Crises Questionnaire Module.

The results of the study found that majority of students in the first year of the pandemic were mostly under offline modes of learning. Among students in high school or elementary, an overwhelming majority (79%) were under modular distance instruction, 9% were under online distance learning, and 12% were under blended learning in School Year 2020-2021. Among college students, 70% of whom were under synchronous online learning, 24% under blended learning, and 7% under asynchronous learning.

Almost on daily basis, a quarter of students experienced a problem with internet access, and the percentage is higher among modular distance learners (26%) and asynchronous college learners (35%), who may still need to access learning resources online. Meanwhile, 21% of college students reported having difficulty finding a quiet place to study, while 15% of students in high school or elementary experienced this every day or almost every day (see Table 1).

It is also worth noting that on a daily basis, 12% of modular distance learners had trouble understanding school lessons, while 17% of asynchronous college learners had everyday difficulty in motivating themselves to do school work.

These problems may have negative consequences on the performance of students, who have had to deal with the uncertainty of the pandemic and new instruction methods. Incidentally, students in 2021 rated their school performance lower than students in 2013 (see Figure 1).

The Department of Education has ordered the return of full face-to-face learning on 2 November 2022, while several tertiary education institutions still maintain some form of online or blended instruction.


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