The Hidden Benefits of the Campus - What the Covid-19 Pandemic Can Teach Us About the Computing Learning Environment
The educational context for students and educators across the world changed when the Covid-19 pandemic forced many educational institutions to shut down all on-campus activities in the spring of 2020. In this paper, we explore how computing students’ behaviors were affected by the transformation to online-based learning during the pandemic and what this can teach us about the learning environment. A mixed-method analysis of a survey sent out to students in the weeks after lockdown investigated the important aspects of the learning environment, both on campus and online. Results show that informal learning spaces are essential to students, yet challenging to transfer effectively to the online environment. Furthermore, the scaffolding for study behavior development provided by the schedule and structure in the oncampus environment was found to be valuable to students, but often difficult to replicate online. In the paper, these findings are described and discussed further, exploring the educators’ short and long-term implications.