The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) presented new, daunting academic adversities to college students, especially those from underserved communities. This study provides a nuanced understanding of underserved students’ adversities in online distance education, based on an in-depth analysis of narratives of 220 students from a minority-serving institution in the United States. Informed by the capital theory, the study revealed six major barriers to e-learning: technical, cultural, environmental, balance, social, and financial barriers, and identified new underlying dimensions. Moreover, the study found that technical barriers are often coupled with other types of barriers and underserved students are more likely to experience multiple learning barriers. A variance model of influencing factors was proposed for e-learning outcomes. The paper highlights new digital divide in e-learning and provides practical implications for educational institutions to support underserved students in overcoming academic adversities and building educational resilience.
Deng, Xuefei “Nancy” and Sun, Rui
"Barriers to e-Learning During Crisis: A Capital Theory Perspective on Academic Adversity,"
Journal of Information Systems Education: Vol. 33
Available at: https://aisel.aisnet.org/jise/vol33/iss1/9
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