Document Type : Research Paper


Department of English, Faculty of Literature, Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran


The global outbreak of COVID-19 necessitated a swift transition from conventional face-to-face (F2F) teaching to Emergency Remote Teaching (ERT) in educational institutions worldwide. This sudden shift posed significant challenges for both teachers and students, particularly those in low-resource rural schools. This study sought to probe into this experience in the context of English as a Foreign Language (EFL) instruction, focusing on the perspectives of teachers and students in rural high schools within Iran. The study participants were 13 female EFL teachers and 15 female EFL students teaching and studying in rural high schools in different cities in Iran. Employing a qualitative approach, data were gathered through semi-structured interviews, online observation, and one of the researcher’s reflective journals. Thematic analysis was utilized to analyze the data, identifying several categories encompassing the hurdles encountered by the participants and the achievements they attained. The identified categories pertaining to hurdles encompassed technological, financial, educational, personal, professional, and well-being problems. Similarly, the categories pertaining to achievements comprised technological, educational, and professional progress, as well as enhanced convenience. Exploring the dilemmas and aspirations expressed by these participants can inform and better equip the educational system of Iran to effectively respond to similar crises in the future. Furthermore, this study offers insights to education authorities, aiding in the resolution of barriers to distance online education and facilitating enhanced preparedness for potential future emergencies.


Main Subjects

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