Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, higher education institutions worldwide were compelled to close their campuses and relocate their educational operations to online platforms. This study investigates the aspects that contribute to the efficacy of online education and examines the perceptions of professors and students at a Taiwanese university about the benefits, limits, and suggestions of online learning in COVID-19. A three-stage research framework comprising literature review, interviews and thematic analysis was applied to obtain a thorough understanding of the phenomenon. Remote learning, convenience, and easy accessibility were among the benefits, whereas inefficiency and difficulties in preserving academic integrity were among the drawbacks. Students suggested that blended lectures, dividing lectures into chapters, weekly assignments, regular online meetings and open-book exams might enhance learning outcomes in online courses. According to the suggestions, professors should be trained on using online technologies and building courses with more interactivity. Despite the importance of digital technologies in online learning, professors need to consider minimizing technological needs based on students’ situations. Key lessons learnt from this study are discussed in the hopes of providing beneficial recommendations for educational policymakers, educators, students, and researchers to promote effective education in both online and classroom modes during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.
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