We seek to help Stanford collectively learn the lessons of COVID-19 pandemic remote teaching
The disruption to teaching and learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, as devastating as it was, also contains germs of opportunity. The Stanford community responded resourcefully, and innovations arose that could enhance education in years to come.
For this review, Stanford Digital Education gathered stories about how the campus supported academic continuity during the period of emergency remote instruction. The people we interviewed — Stanford leaders, faculty, staff, and students — provided diverse perspectives on the challenges they faced and the impact of pandemic measures.
We hope our review leads to reflection on our shared pandemic experience, struggles, and progress. We believe this effort will serve as the foundation on which Stanford can design its future digital education strategy.
“As we emerge from the pandemic, the skills and confidence that instructors developed for emergency remote teaching can be translated to more intentionally designed learning experiences.”
Vice Provost for Digital Education Matthew Rascoff
5 takeaways from our pandemic research
- Emergency remote instruction marks a shift in Stanford’s identity.
- Staff have a new and vital role in shaping instructional innovation and in building new collaborative networks.
- The move to remote education worsened access for many students, though some saw an improvement.
- The faculty-student relationship changed.
- A culture of empathy grew.
Explore the Stanford pandemic education report
Pandemic emergency teaching presented substantial challenges to instructors, but it also generated opportunities for significant transformation of students’ remote learning experiences. Many curricular practices at Stanford were reshaped to promote active, interactive, and experiential education — including more flexible classroom assessments and opportunities for flipped learning.Explore educators' creative adaptations
The pandemic fostered significant growth among professional and online learning communities both within and outside of Stanford. Stanford’s impact on these communities has been far-flung, informing pandemic teaching and learning practices at institutions both nationally and globally.Find out about Stanford's growing learning networks
- How can Stanford continue the culture of academic ingenuity and innovation that shone during the pandemic?
- How do we provide digital education opportunities that enhance equity and access for students?
- Under what circumstances should faculty and academic instructors be able to teach with flexibility, using such instructional modalities as fully online, hybrid, or flipped instruction?
- Should students be afforded alternatives to attending classes in-person and having more options of alternative forms of assessment?
- What should be students’ role in course design?
- Is there a need to maintain and grow professional knowledge-sharing networks and online teaching resources such as the Teaching Commons, the Teach Symposium, and the Digital Ambassadors program?
Students reporting feeling overwhelmed often or very often in spring 2020