Teaching and learning during the covid-19 pandemic: A topic modeling study

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47 Citations (Scopus)


The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic caused significant disruption to teaching and learning activities at all levels. Faculty, students, institutions, and parents have had to rapidly adapt and adopt measures to make the best use of available resources, tools and teaching strategies. While much of the online teaching pedagogies have been theoretically and practically explored to a limited extent, the scale at which these were deployed was unprecedented. This has led a large number of researchers to share challenges, solutions and knowledge gleaned during this period. The main aim of this work was to thematically model the literature related to teaching and learning during, and about, COVID-19. Abstracts and metadata of literature were extracted from Scopus, and topic modeling was used to identify the key research themes. The research encompassed diverse scientific disciplines, including social sciences, computer science, and life sciences, as well as learnings in support systems, including libraries, information technology, and mental health. The following six key themes were identified: (i) the impact of COVID-19 on higher education institutions, and challenges faced by these institutions; (ii) the use of various tools and teaching strategies employed by these institutions; (iii) the teaching and learning experience of schools and school teachers; (iv) the impact of COVID-19 on the training of healthcare workers; (v) the learnings about COVID-19, and treatment strategies from patients; and (vi) the mental health of students as a result of COVID-19 and e-learning. Regardless of the key themes, what stood out was the inequities in education as a result of the digital divide. This has had a huge impact not only in middle-and low-income nations, but also in several parts of the developed world. Several important lessons have been learned, which, no doubt, will be actively incorporated into teaching and learning practices and teacher training. Nonetheless, the full effect of these unprecedented educational adaptions on basic education, expert training, and mental health of all stakeholders is yet to be fully fathomed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number347
JournalEducation Sciences
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021


  • COVID-19
  • Digital divide
  • Distance education
  • Online learning
  • Teacher training
  • Topic modeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Education
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Public Administration
  • Computer Science Applications


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