You may have heard a lot of stories about the inconveniences of distance learning. In some ways, many students could barely adjust to this setup during the height of the pandemic. It was new for most students, and you couldn’t blame them.
However, distance learning has been around for many years, as pointed out by the University of Kansas. The COVID-19 crisis was unprecedented, and the only thing educational institutions found out from years of implementing distance learning was that the setup wasn’t applicable to anyone.
There are many reasons why students disapprove of virtual instructions. In any case, they have to endure the struggles just to keep up with their studies amid the chaotic nature of the virus that’s been making the world suffer. These are some of the challenges students need to go through in a distance learning setup.
Deprivation of Physical Connection
Seeing your teacher in person somehow feels different from seeing them on computer screens. Studying can be more effective for some in a classroom setup. Students feel like they’re not studying alone if they’re with their classmates and teachers physically. Some students feel more inspired to learn in a group study.
Unfortunately, distance learning has made it impossible for students to study with classmates. School projects were also not done the same during the pandemic. The collaboration between students became more virtual. This somehow affected students’ skills in communicating their inputs on a project. People who are used to in-person learning setups had alienating experiences doing distance learning.
Many would think that the US is advanced when it comes to technology. Despite this notion, the internet did fail several students in some areas of the country. The Atlantic reported that there were rural areas where the distance learning setup didn’t run smoothly. This was all because of the unequal access to the internet. Remember that this was that time when everyone was stuck at home. Many people were using the internet for different purposes. From working from home to passing the time, most were online. This might have also affected the internet traffic.
Studying online is already a struggle for some who are used to in-person learning. If the internet connection is intermittent, the learning won’t be that effective. It’s unfortunate that the US is experiencing poor internet service. Imagine how much worse it is for students in countries that are forever dealing with similar problems. It must be affecting their learning capabilities big time.
Lack of Focus
Getting distracted is typical for students. But if you suddenly switched from a classroom setup to virtual learning, distraction could be worse. Focus is one thing you need to have as a student. This is an element that enables you to absorb important things from what you’re studying.
If you’re learning in an environment you primarily associate with rest, you may lose focus. Your house can remind you that it’s a place to relax after a long day of school. However, you may have a hard time disassociating relaxation from the homey environment. This is why you lose focus immediately, thus losing your sense of learning. The good thing is that there are academies and innovative charter schools that take time to find solutions. Some of them accept only the students they can accommodate. This way, teachers can effectively deliver their lessons to select students. Classes with limited students can help learners to eradicate distractions.
As previously mentioned, it’s not that easy for students to disassociate their houses from a place of relaxation. A problem that this caused is mismanagement of time. If you didn’t need to commute to school, why wake up early? If you didn’t need to wake up early, why sleep before 9 PM? If you’ve removed the time allotted for traveling to school, you’ll have more time for playing.
And sometimes, students could get very distracted with entertaining themselves at home. This can cause them to lose time in studying. There are also school tasks that overlap with each other. This could make it hard for students to juggle between tasks that have similar deadlines. All these could happen just because of difficulty in time management.
Some people consider that doing things virtually is the future of the world. But in the education sector, there are still many things that need polishing when it comes to virtual learning. This setup may work if executed properly. The struggles mentioned above can be used to create the perfect formula for distance learning. Overcoming them may help with materializing the future of schools and virtual classrooms.