Digital technology adaptation and initiatives: a systematic review of teaching and learning during COVID-19

Xue Zhou*, Christopher James Mac Bride Smith, Hosam Al-Samarraie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
112 Downloads (Pure)


COVID-19 dramatically influenced students’ and staff’s learning and teaching experiences and approaches to learning. While many papers examined individual experiences in the context of higher education, synthesising these papers to determine enabling and hindering influences of digital adaptation was needed to guide the next phase of online learning reforms. This study explored the main dimensions of digital technology adaptation in higher education during the COVID-19 pandemic. The consequences for student and staff experiences and what aspects should be sustained and developed were discussed in this review. A total of 90 articles (published between 1st January 2020 and 30th June 2021) were identified and analysed based on the preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analyses framework. Four dimensions (with associated sub-factors) were found to influence student and staff experiences: techno-economic; personal and psychological; teaching, learning and assessment; and social. The findings highlighted that an integrated approach, across institutional, technical platforms, and individuals would be required to sustain digital learning initiatives during the crisis time.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Computing in Higher Education
Early online date26 Apr 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 26 Apr 2023


  • COVID-19
  • Digital technology adaptation
  • Higher education
  • Online/blended learning
  • Student and staff experience
  • Systematic literature review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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