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Title: COVID-19 and Distance Learning: an Italian Survey of the Effects on EFL Teaching and Learning during the Pandemic
Authors: Romagnuolo, Anna 
D'arcangelis, A. 
Issue Date: 2021
The Covid-19 pandemic outbreak forced many schools and universities to interrupt F2F lessons and switch to total remote teaching, using digital electronic tools, media, and mostly LMS platforms, or, after an initial period of stoppage, to opt for some form of hybrid teaching combination of synchronous and asynchronous lessons and/or lessons in presence and online.
Even in the Before Times e-learning had posed several challenges for teachers and their ability to engage students actively, revealing its potential weaknesses: lack of digital skills on the part of both teachers and learners, difficult time and class management, students’ attention-maintenance, and customisation of teaching resources. At the beginning of “emergency teaching” due to the spreading contagion of the Corona virus, distance learning was heralded as a panacea in times of crisis, an opportunity for innovation, educators’ collaboration, students’ increased inclusion and information intake. (Dhawan [1], Yi and Jang [2], Ciarnella & Santangelo [3], Li & Lalani [4], UNESCO Report ED-2020/FoE-COVID-19/20 [5])
The briefest literature review on what has been written about distance learning in Covid times reveals that pedagogists, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and public and private institutions working in the educational field, have bountifully distributed guidelines and reports recommending the transformation of teaching approaches and practices, and the adaptation of contents and schedules to the new learning environment. Have these indications been followed? Has this emergency teaching been successful? Has distance learning affected foreign language acquisition?
Several surveys have been conducted internationally and nationally to assess the effectiveness of DL during the pandemic: a few have focused on the teaching of ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages). The purpose of this paper is to illustrate some of these results, enriched with the outcomes of a recent survey undertaken by both teachers and students of English as Foreign Language in Italian formal educational settings. The survey was conducted via an online questionnaire, elaborated by one of the authors, which was sent to teachers and students of local middle and secondary schools and universities soon after the end of this school and academic year.
ISBN: 978-84-09-34549-6
Appears in Collections:D1. Contributo in Atti di convegno

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