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The University of Panic: Leadership in the Post-Learning COVID Campus

The University of Panic: Leadership in the Post-Learning COVID Campus
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Author(s): Tara Brabazon (Flinders University, Australia)
Copyright: 2022
Pages: 13
Source title: Assessing University Governance and Policies in Relation to the COVID-19 Pandemic
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Mansoor A. Alaali (Ahlia University, Bahrain)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-8279-4.ch016

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Abstract

A pandemic crushes assumptions and inherited narratives of higher education. This chapter explores how COVID-19 tested the parameters of teaching and learning and how universities failed this test. Through the panic of shutdowns, lockdowns, economic restructures, social distancing, and closures, the speed of change and decision making was profound and under public scrutiny. Online learning has been a panacea for economic and social problems for 20 years. To manage a crisis the scale of COVID-19, online learning would be the obvious solution. However, the pandemic showed the flaws in this strategy and the toxic reality of quick fixes to higher education. Students were short changed and academics pushed to exhaustion. After COVID-19, higher education is in shreds. The visions and futures of universities are blurred. Using the theories of Paul Virilio, particularly his University of Disaster, this chapter probes how higher education unravels and dissociates teaching and research. When time is short and risks are high, what mode of leadership will survive in the post-pandemic university?

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