How Online Learning Fits in This Fall

How Online Learning Fits in This Fall

The future of teaching has shifted to the online platform following the global lockdown that started early last year, with most lectures and classes b

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The future of teaching has shifted to the online platform following the global lockdown that started early last year, with most lectures and classes being held remotely. The lockdown brought about the shift in the safety of teachers and students, significantly affecting in-person learning in the United States. As a result, learning institutions were forced to look for an alternative to continuing teaching.

The University of Nevada in Las Vegas initially planned to hold 80% of its courses in their respective campuses and 20% online. That was a significant increase in online lessons, compared to the 10% previously reported before the lockdown. However, the university has reviewed its plans, hoping to host 60% in-person classes and 40% online this year. 

The change has come due to an increase in the rate of infections, with lots of students being uncomfortable going to campus considering the situation in Las Vegas and Nevada. According to Chris L. Heavey, the university has given a chance to students who were not comfortable in in-person learning. The faculties who were not interested in offering in-person learning have also had an opportunity to shift their teaching mode to online.

The University of Nevada is just one of the many learning institutions looking for alternative methods to engage their students. Some colleges in the United States have 50% in-person learning while others have 90% in-person learning.  The decision to reduce in-person learning in UNLV is due to postponed vaccination of students until spring. 

Heavy also revealed there are mixed reactions from the students in shifting the courses online. After the announcement, the university recorded a 2.2% increase in the enrollment of students. The shift towards the online platform was abrupt as some of the faculties were forced to reevaluate their mode of delivering the content to the students. 

The vice president of the consolidated students of UNLV aired his views on the same, given the mixed reactions coming from the students toward online teaching and learning. According to Lugo, the move of the courses to the online platform is a good move and safer than in-person learning. Shutting institutions due to the prevailing pandemic is not an option for now, as online platforms present a viable solution. This move is expected to prevent learning institutions from moving downward. 

According to Alexander, a lot of colleges are waiting to see the progress of the remote classes. Most of the colleges are learning from last years’ outcome when the pandemic hit the world when all the schools were shut down. We knew that online was the way to go in the future, but we did not expect it to be that soon. Some of the colleges felt that in-person learning was more productive because public health provided enough information. 

The assistant professor of the practice of higher education, Christopher R. Marsicano, said that there is pressure emanating from the undergraduate student for the in-person learning despite the comfort enjoyed by the professor in the remote teaching. The reason for online teaching is due to the huge number of students who are in isolation.  Another reason for adopting online classes is the accommodation of every student despite the distance of proximity to the school. 

Most of the colleges are resuming in-person learning. We have the University of Northern Carolina, where 91% of the courses are in person, and 9% are remote. Another example is Pennsylvania state university, where there is a push for 94% in-person learning and 6% remote learning. Despite the push for in-person learning, there is some increase in the percentage of students studying online. The push for more in-person learning is great, mostly coming from the students. 

Adopting the push of offline learning will face hurdles as most colleges are pushing for in-person learning. Some colleges are not offering remote learning for international students. According to a survey by the institute of education, international students who will not travel to the US for studies were given a chance to enroll in online learning. 78% of colleges were offering that opportunity to international students. There has been a substantial drop in the number of colleges offering that opportunity to international students until they can attend in-person this fall.

Online learning is still significant for many institutions this fall. For example, the California state university will have 80% of the courses in person this fall across all the 23 campuses. Only 20% will be offered online, mostly for international students, though the percentage varies on different campuses. The university almost went entirely remote in 2020. 

According to Davis, the president of the professional staff congress, some of the colleges are using the safety approach to move the remote option upon the request of the faculty members while others are not. At the beginning of the summer, it wasn’t easy to understand what students wanted, which was in-person learning. In-person, learning was the feeling of many, but that has shifted as many students, and faculty members are concerned about their health.