written by RC Canlas
Covid-19 has greatly impacted the Philippines' higher education system. Most Universities among other learning institutions have shifted to a completely online format in order to accommodate the students. The challenge now is not 100% just how much is available but also what is being offered that's quality content and at an affordable cost.
Here are some impacts brought by covid-19 to higher education:
COVID- 19 has impacted higher education by changing where classes are held, who teaches them, and what they are about. Before, most classes were held on campus, and the teachers were University staff members. Now, classes are virtual. Students that want to take classes in a University have to be logged into a field of web pages and accessed via the Internet. Teachers are not employed by the University but instead by companies like online-classroom or coursework that specialize in preparing lessons for online classes.
School closures and mergers
Schools are being closed and merged for a lot of reasons. First, students have less access to public schools and some private schools are going bankrupt. To save money, schools close their doors to a set amount of schools or merge them all together into another big school. This reduces the number of staff members and teachers, increases class sizes, and decreases course offerings.
In fact, there are about 89 schools that applied for tuition hikes during the pandemic.
Tuition fee hikes
Fees are rising and most of the time, it is because of the rising number of tuition taking up for funding. Schools are coping with this by giving handfuls of scholarships every year. However, not all students can get scholarships since they might have other priorities in life. And this causes private schools to become more expensive than before, pushing parents to scramble for more money or find affordable options. Sometimes, this translates into having to send their students to public schools just to save more money.
Tuition fees in state universities have increased by 500-1000% in 2020.
Students are becoming less satisfied with what they are getting. That is because when courses are offered by schools, it is not being offered in all areas of the country as well as online. And when students want to take classes outside the school system, they must do it on their own expense. The cost of taking an online course and the stress of finishing it on time is a lot.
The lack of community engagement and student-teacher interactions is also a big factor in affecting students' satisfaction with these courses. If students wanted to interact with their instructors, they have to go to the campus if it is offered there or schedule a face-to-face meeting so that communication does not fall short. And this means that they are compelled to attend classes even if they can finish their projects in time without needing any assistance from others.
In conclusion, COVID-19 is a game-changer in higher education. It has changed the landscape of how people learn and it has caused a lot of campuses to revamp their educational structure. But it is not yet the right time for everybody because there is still much to be done in terms of making this system better.