Ten simple rules for supporting a temporary online pivot in higher education

lecture recording
higher education policy



Chiara Horlin

Jacqui Hutchison

Jo-Anne Murray

Louise Robson

Michael K Seery

Jill R D MacKay


October 1, 2020

As continued COVID-19 disruption looks likely across the world, perhaps until 2021, contingency plans are evolving in case of further disruption in the 2020–2021 academic year. This includes delivering face-to-face programs fully online for at least part of the upcoming academic year for new and continuing cohorts. This temporary pivot will necessitate distance teaching and learning across almost every conceivable pedagogy, from fundamental degrees to professionally accredited ones. Each institution, program, and course will have its own myriad of individualized needs; however, there is a common question that unites us all: how do we provide teaching and assessment to students in a manner that is accessible, fair, equitable, and provides the best learning whilst acknowledging the temporary nature of the pivot? No “one size fits all” solution exists, and many of the choices that need to be made will be far from simple; however, this paper provides a starting point and basic principles to facilitate discussions taking place around the globe by balancing what we know from the pedagogy of online learning with the practicalities imposed by this crisis and any future crises

Behind the Paper

The little paper born on the canal . . . Emily was out for a pandemic mental health walk along the Union Canal and messaged us with an idea. This paper came from a lot of work and heartache, but it was a joy to write. We got wonderful feedback from our preprint and I think this is one of the best papers I’ve ever been inolved with.

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