Lecturers’ perspectives on using virtual classrooms in education: Challenges and Opportunities for the Post-COVID-19 Era
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This study aims at examining the perspectives of university lecturers on using virtual classrooms in education in Palestine. This study used quantitative and qualitative data collection tools and analysis methods. The present cross-sectional study was carried out from January 10 to February 13, 2023, during the second semester of 2022/2023. An online questionnaire with 33 closed-ended questions was used to collect data. The study group consisted of teachers and lecturers (n = 311) who teach in Palestinian universities. The R cran program was employed for the statistical analysis of quantitative data. The Mann-Whitney U-test and Kruskal-Wallis test were used To determine whether demographic characteristics had a significant impact on teachers' perspective of virtual classrooms in education. The results showed that most of the participants (71.4%) prefer to employ virtual classrooms in education since they are just like in-person education as it is very organized with deadlines. There is a significant difference in the mean scores of the preference toward employing virtual classrooms among lecturers who have experience in the usage of technological tools and those who have no experience (p = 0.07). Lecturers aged 25-30 years were the highest in mean scores of preference (3.96 ± 0.32) and have a higher satisfaction toward using virtual classrooms (p = 0.01). In addition, teachers who attended courses respecting employing virtual classrooms have a higher satisfaction (3.6 ± 0.78) towards using it in education compared to those who did not attend any course related to virtual classrooms (2.91 ± 1.06) (p <0.001). Only 28.6% of teachers experience problems during distance teaching through virtual classrooms. Teachers face many obstacles related to the curriculum, students, and electronic environment. These obstacles might be contributed to the stress experienced by 35.70% of teachers during distance teaching.
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