Discussion: Online Instruction

By Livia Peterson

Despite I am extremely private regarding the personal life, I recently announced I am attending college, majoring in film studies. Anyway, the Spring 2019 semester provided the inevitable — endure the online class even though I prefer face to face instruction. Some classes are only provided online, while others boast the option of meeting in lectures, discussions, and labs if it is a science class. (Discussions are small classes allowing conversations regarding the topics discussed in the lectures.)

I attended a Geoscience Colloquium by a guest lecturer during the Fall 2018 semester, always fascinated with the solar system, and the Natural Science + Lab is required, as part of the Bachelor of Arts degree and therefore, I pondered despite this is online, Geology of the Planets is perfect.

One week in to Geology of the Planets and I am thankful the online course is structured, as if it were in a face to face class. The schedule is read or watch the lectures, complete the labs, and have fun experiencing the weekly quizzes during the two attempts (the highest score counts).

Nonetheless, I am so used to attending the lectures and what not…I literally visited the instructor’s office to put the name to the face and we briefly discussed the class. It was a relief chatting with him and hence, I really sort of wish it was a face to face class. Science is sometimes a difficult subject due to involving mathematics and indeed, math and science are best friends. He noted Planetary Geology is an observational science than a mathematical science. I guess it is considered one of the soft sciences. I could never handle one of the hard sciences such as biology and chemistry. You have another guest coming if I must endure biology and chemistry. It is pretty obvious I am artsy person.

Based on my Week One observations, the time management is extremely important to experiencing the online classes. Figure if there is six lectures one must read, read three on Tuesday and the other three on Thursday. One should structure it as if the class meets two days a week and add another day or two for labs if it is a science class. I hope I am completely acclimated to the online classes by the end of the semester, so I am able to experience more if required.

Some related advice: If attending the four year university, expect to have teaching assistants in every class, even the online classes. The teaching assistants usually grade assignments, guide the discussion sections, and conduct the laboratories. If attending the two year university, expect to enjoy the instructor to teach and grade assignments. If enrolled in the online class, ensure to meet the instructor face to face during the office hours or appointment and guaranteed the instructor will appreciate it. If easily overwhelmed, start with the two year college and then, move on to the four year college. If enrolled in the University of Wisconsin system, enjoy transitioning from Desire to Learn (D2L) to Canvas!

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