Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) 2nd Special Issue on Covid 19 Challenges January 2022                 Pp. 202-215

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A Systematic Review of Online Learning during COVID 19: Students’ Motivation, Task
Engagement and Acceptance

Mujahid Mohtar
Faculty of Education,
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Selangor, Malaysia
Corresponding Author:

 Melor Md Yunus
Faculty of Education
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Selangor, Malaysia


Received: 8/4/2021                 Accepted:12/28/2021              Published: 1/24/2022


The COVID 19 pandemic has forced the education sector to switch to online learning. To make the transition a success, there is a need to understand students’ perception towards online learning and design a learning experience around it. Thus, the aim of this paper is to identify students’ perceptions towards online learning in terms of motivation, task engagement and acceptance. The systematic literature review method was used to search for relevant papers and synthesize the findings. 40 articles from the year 2020 obtained from Google Scholar. It is found that the most used method in studying students’ perception is the quantitative method and students’ acceptance was the most discussed topic. It is also found that the primary factors influencing motivation and acceptance are sense of ownership and accessibility respectively. In terms of task engagement, only half of the findings reveal that students are engaged in online learning. In summary, the three main constructs are important items that should be taken into consideration when teaching an online course to ensure the success of the course. Through this systematic review, future research can identify and explore different areas and perspectives on this topic.
Keywords: acceptance, COVID-19, motivation, online learning, systematic review, task engagement

Cite as: Mohtar, M., & Md Yunus, M. (2022). A Systematic Review of Online Learning during COVID 19: Students’ Motivation, Task Engagement and Acceptance.  Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) 2nd Special Issue on Covid 19 Challenges (2) 202-215.


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Received: 8/4/2021  
Accepted: 12/28/2021
Published: 1/24/2022

Mujahid Mohtar is a Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) undergraduate student at the Faculty of Education, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM). ORCid ID:

Dr. Melor Md Yunus is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Education, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and is currently the Deputy Dean (Research and Innovation) at the Faculty of Education, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM). She holds a B.A. in English (Linguistics) from the University of Nevada-Reno, USA and an M.A. in TESL from the Arizona State University, USA. She then earned her Ph.D. in Education (TESL) from the University of Bristol, UK. Her areas of concentration are TESL, language pedagogy and the use of technology in TESL. Her expertise is in the area of Technology-enhanced Language Learning (TELL). ORCid ID :