Can blended learning ease the impact of COVID-19 in rural schools in Sabah, Malaysia?

Hamzah Nor BIN AEDY RAHMAN (Presenter), Santiana RAMLI (Presenter)

Research output: Other Conference ContributionsPresentation


COVID-19 has affected nearly 1.6 billion learners around the world. As of August 2020, the outbreak has affected over 190 countries with the United States topping the global COVID-19 statistics with over 6.41 million cases. Malaysia is currently in 94th place in the world with 9, 559 cases. As of 31st August 2020, the number of active cases in Malaysia was 169. The decrease in the number of active cases in Malaysia was due to the introduction of social distancing. Throughout this period, all schools in Malaysia were closed resulting in the suspension of all face-to-face teaching and learning. Thus, teachers nationwide have turned to blended learning to ensure all students can learn. Generally, blended learning refers to an approach that combines learning and interaction via online platforms. This approach allows learning to take place without the need to physically be in a classroom. However, in rural schools in Sabah, Malaysia, the use of blended learning can be difficult. Thus, this quantitative research aims to determine the impacts of COVID-19 and to investigate the effects of blended learning throughout COVID-19 in rural schools. A total of 50 teachers and 50 students were conveniently selected as participants in which all of them needed to answer a set of questionnaires. The data collected from the questionnaires were then analysed descriptively using IBM SPSS Statistics 26 software. The findings of this research show that blended learning should further be explored in rural schools. However, teachers and students believed that they faced challenges in incorporating blended learning in the teaching and learning. This is due to the fact that teachers and students are facing 1) limited access to the internet, 2) shortage of electronic devices, and 3) no electricity. If these problems could be solved, blended learning could be the new norm in the Malaysian education system.


SeminarNational Chengchi University–Lingnan University International Research Seminar 2020
Abbreviated titleThe 3rd NCCU-Lingnan International Research Seminar
Country/TerritoryTaiwan, Province of China
Internet address

Bibliographical note

Abstract published in The 3rd NCCU-Lingnan International Research Seminar : The Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Higher Education Policies: International Mobility, Student Learning Outcomes, and Research Development : Program, 2020, p. 11.


  • COVID-19
  • blended learning
  • rural school
  • rural education


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