Abrupt Transformation to Virtual Teaching-Learning for Medical Undergraduates in the COVID-19 Era: Challenges or Opportunities for Students and Educators

  • Naina Kumar Industrial Engineering College, King Abdul-Aziz University, Jeddah, SA
  • Shyamala R. Industrial Engineering College, King Abdul-Aziz University, Jeddah, SA
Keywords: Assessment; COVID-19; Educator; Student; Virtual learning.


COVID-19 pandemic has severely affected all the essential services worldwide including the education system on very concise notice. To cope with the educational crisis worldwide, physical classrooms were suddenly shifted to e-learning, resulting in enormous challenges for both the students and the educators. The medical education system suffered the major brunt as it is competency-based and requires student-patient interaction and training on real patients. The closure of medical colleges nationwide resulted in the initiation of e-learning for all the students, which initially posed a lot of challenges both for the students and the teachers as medical education on total virtual mode was a very new concept. Along with the challenges, virtual teaching has now opened newer opportunities for bringing revolutionary changes in medical education. The present article briefs some of these challenges and emerging opportunities for medical students and educators during the pandemic. The literature was searched from English peer-reviewed journals from databases including PubMed, Scopus, EMBASE, Google Scholar.