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Discourses of Distance Education and COVID-19 in South Korean News between 2019 and 2021: A Topic Modeling Analysis
This paper aims to identify dominant discourses of distance education that emerged in Korean society before, during, and after the COVID-19 outbreak in January 2019. To achieve the aim, the authors have conducted a Topic Modeling analysis of 8,865 news articles published by 54 South Korean media outlets between 2019 and 2021. As a result, five key topics and the top 10 keywords associated with each topic have been identified for 2019, 2020, and 2021, respectively—15 topics and 150 keywords in total for the three years. There have been meaningful shifts not only in the quantity of news articles published each year but also in the quality of conversations presented in those articles on distance education. This article carefully analysed and reflected both continuity and discontinuity of distance education discourses in Korean society. Based on the results, we have drawn four discussion points: a) the normality of DE discourses, b) the historicity of DE discourses, c) the maturity of DE discourses, and d) the partiality of DE discourses. Despite the specific cultural context from which the four points were drawn, the discussions offer valuable insights applicable to different cultural contexts.
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