The global higher education sector has been greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the mode of delivery has transformed into a blended learning mode of delivery or fully remote mode. Online delivery significantly demands reliable and stable internet access and technology, at both the lecturer’s and students’ ends. This paper investigates the challenges and barriers to accessibility of technologies used for remote delivery of learning and teaching. The paper also investigates key digital skills students need to help them develop and enhance their technology literacy. A survey was also conducted among 555 university undergraduate students to identify their choice of device to connect to remote learning during the transition to online learning. It was revealed that students used laptops and smartphones considerably and least relied on desktop computers. The results indicate the significance of a device’s portability, built-in network hardware and cost. Further, it identifies the impacts of accessibility of educational technologies on students’ learning experience.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Gamage, K. & Perera, E. 2021, 'Undergraduate students’ device preferences in the transition to online learning', Social Sciences, 10(8), article no: 288. http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/socsci10080288

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Last updated: 17 June 2022
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