THE IMPACT OF INNOVATIVE PEDAGOGICAL APPROACHES AMONG NIGERIA UNIVERSITIES DURING COVID-19
Keywords:COVID-19 pandemic, Education, Pedagogy, E-learning
Education was among the sectors with the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Before the pandemic, the Nigerian education system adopted a purely, face-to-face approach to teaching and learning in most of its universities. However, with the emergence of the lockdown condition and school closure, following the COVID-19 pandemic, both students and lecturers were helpless about how to continue learning in the face of the pandemic. In a bid to avoid brain-drain and prevent the total collapse of the education sector in the country, Nigeria joined other leagues of developed countries to incorporate e-learning in the education system. This paper investigates the challenges posed by, and the impacts of COVID-19 on university education in Nigeria while examining the impact of the Innovative Pedagogical Approaches that were utilized in ensuring a successful learning transition during the said period. It also examines the perception of students of Nigerian institutions of higher learning using the new digital culture induced by the COVID-19 pandemic. This paper showed that e-learning spurred education development in tertiary institutions in Nigeria, as it impacted positively on the educational process, unlike the physical chalkboard in the classrooms. Studies also revealed that some students of higher education in Nigeria had a low acceptance of virtual learning embarked upon by many higher institutions throughout the country during the COVID-19 lockdown preferring instead the traditional classroom setting due to poor internet infrastructure and lack of electricity and thus putting them in the “Laggards adopter categorization” of the diffusion innovation theory, i.e., the group that is highly conservative and extremely slow to accept new technological innovations. Recommendations such as investment in digital infrastructure, training university staff on new teaching methods, and developing strategies for improving e-learning in university education were highlighted. Finally, the study concludes that the increasing access to new information and communication technology (ICT) via internet connectivity made access to education easier barring the previously insurmountable barrier of distance and location of higher education seekers during the period.
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