Studying Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Global Higher Education: Evidence for Future Research and Practice

24 Pages Posted: 9 Jun 2020

See all articles by Roy Y. Chan

Roy Y. Chan

Indiana University Bloomington

Date Written: June 1, 2020


I present evidence that formal and informal research on ‘online education and distance learning’, followed by ‘international mobility’ and ‘public health’, are currently the three most important issues and topics facing scholars and practitioners as a result of the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Using NVivo 12.0 qualitative software, I collected and analyzed data from 123 abstracts representing 147 contributors across 98 colleges and universities from the author’s forthcoming book (provisionally) entitled, Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Global Higher Education, to be published by Routledge (Taylor & Francis). Preliminary result suggests that the number of proposals submitted to the ‘online education and distance learning’ section (N = 34) suggest a major shift from international and comparative higher education scholars, policymakers and practitioners to investigate an area that is understudied, and perhaps largely overlooked in many developing and transitional economies. I provide several resource global researchers and community members could implement to publish empirical research and policy briefs surrounding the impacts of the COVID-19 on postsecondary (tertiary) education. Implications for future research and policymaking are discussed.

Keywords: COVID-19, coronavirus, higher education, internationalization, mobility, qualitative research

Suggested Citation

Chan, Roy Y., Studying Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Global Higher Education: Evidence for Future Research and Practice (June 1, 2020). Available at SSRN: or

Roy Y. Chan (Contact Author)

Indiana University Bloomington ( email )

School of Education
Educational Leadership and Policy Studies
Bloomington, IN 47405
United States
562-338-1507 (Phone)


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