The Impact of Faculty Experience with Emergency Remote Teaching: An Interpretive Phenomenological Study

Author: Maha Al-Freih, Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University, Saudi Arabia
Published: April 2, 2021

Citation: Al-Freih, M. (2021). The Impact of Faculty Experience with Emergency Remote Teaching: An Interpretive Phenomenological Study, 9(2).


The aim of this phenomenological study is to provide a deeper understanding of the impact of remote teaching on instructors’ perceptions of online learning and future teaching practices amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Interpretative phenomenological analysis was used to analyze open-ended semi-structured interviews conducted with five higher education faculty in Saudi Arabia. Three major themes were identified: enhancing student engagement; increased awareness of technology affordances and constraints; and moving from emergency remote teaching to technology-enhanced and blended learning. Participants of this study were mainly concerned about finding ways to support active student engagement in this new learning environment, which in turn increased their awareness of the educational affordances and constraints of online learning and technologies. Participants’ deeper understanding of the potential of online technologies in supporting student learning, as well as their own and students’ increased familiarity and comfort with online learning and technologies, served as the main drivers for potential future implementation of blended learning and technology-enhanced teaching practices. With that said, participants were still apprehensive about engaging in fully online teaching, arguing that blended strategies and enhanced-technology integration are more likely to overcome some of the limitations of face-to-face teaching and improve the overall learning experience for their students. Discussion of these findings in relation to the extant literature and their implications for higher education institutions moving forward are provided.


COVID-19, emergency remote teaching, faculty professional development, faculty support, online teaching