Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) 2nd Special Issue on Covid 19 Challenges January 2022        Pp.281-289

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Do Online Classes help EFL Learners Improve their English Language skills? A
Qualitative Study at a Saudi University

 Mohammed Madi Albogami
Department of Arts and Education,
Riyadh Community College
King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia


Received: 8/26/2021               Accepted:12/6/2021                          Published: 1/24/2022


The unprecedented time of COVID-19 has called schools and educators worldwide to think of transferring education from face-to-face based to become more digital oriented. This transformation has pros and cons. Scholars in the field are questioning investigating the challenges that online learning entails; however, one of the issues still not fully investigated in the literature is how effective online learning on improving the EFL learners’ language skills. Thus, the purpose of this study is to explore the perspectives of EFL learners toward how effective online learning on improving their English language skills. The participants involved were three students from the Community College at King Saud University. Semi-structured interviews were used to gather the data in the study. The results from the qualitative data showed that the participants reported some flaws associated with online learning. However, they preferred such learning methodology to face-to-face instruction as they feel more comfortable when attending their classes from home, saving their time and costs.  Moreover, the findings showed that online learning helps the learners develop all their language skills, makes them more concentrated, confident, and encourages them to become autonomous learners. The results also suggested that online learning helps EFL learners develop their online learning skills. The outcomes of this research build on the current literature on using online learning in EFL classrooms during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Keywords: challenges, COVID-19, face-to-face, English language skills, online learning, Saudi EFL students  

Cite as:  Albogami, M.M. (2022). Do Online Classes help EFL Learners Improve their English Language skills? A Qualitative Study at a Saudi University .  Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) 2nd Special Issue on Covid 19 Challenges (2) 281-289.


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Received: 8/26/2021
Accepted: 12/6/2021  
Published: 1/24/2022

Mohammed Madi Albogami is an assistant professor of TESOL at Riyadh Community College at King Saud University, Saudi Arabia. He completed his Doctorate in TESOL at Exeter University, UK. His research interests include effective written feedback, teacher professional development, critical pedagogy, and assessment. ORCID: