The objective of this study is to explore the challenges and opportunities created by the abrupt shift from classroom to distance learning. This study will try to address the question of “What distance learning presents for the future of education in a post-pandemic world?” More specifically, it aims to uncover the opportunities distance education brings and the challenges that can be resolved or mitigated in the future. The study focuses on secondary and primary data to uncover and analyze the experience of professors and students of tertiary education with distance learning. Secondary research shows that distance learning provides flexibility, which both students and teachers can enjoy. When combined with different education technologies and tools, distance learning provides a great opportunity for gifted students and students with disabilities. Nonetheless, with the sudden transition to distance learning many challenges have emerged, namely, the main ones being (i) accessibility to technological devices and technical infrastructure; (ii) pedagogical skills and competencies in distance teaching; and (iii) differences in experience based on the field of study and funding of university. Findings from the primary research show that similar challenges (as those mentioned above) are faced by students and professors in Kosovo as well. Both secondary and primary research supports the hypothesis regarding differences in challenges faced as there are actual patterns specific to public and private universities. In public universities, professors and students face greater challenges due to lack of technical resources and funding; therefore, they are relatively more dissatisfied with distance learning. Similarly, research supports the hypothesis that students and professors of Social Sciences have had a more pleasant experience (with distance education), compared to Natural & Applied Sciences (given their reliance on technological equipment). Based on the opportunities and challenges identified, this study highlights a set of recommendations that can improve the distance learning experience in a post pandemic era. More specifically, the recommendations are focused on infrastructure, human resources training, networking, and education providers’ support.
Shahini, Fiona, "Distance Education: Challenges and Opportunities in a Post-Pandemic World. Case of Kosovo" (2021). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from