The pros and cons of classes moving online

Illustration by Sofia Eneqvist

In response to the outbreak of COVID-19, California Baptist University moved classes fully online beginning March 30. Students at CBU have expressed a range of feelings about this change in class structure and lifestyle.

On the surface, working from home, and all the perks of comfort that come with it, seems like it would be easy, but students are finding there are both pros and cons. This list is culled from student responses to a survey posted on the Lancer Media Group’s Instagram @cbulancermedia.

PROS:

1. Comfort of the home:

With classes online, students are able to attend classes right from their living room or bedroom. This gives them the flexibility to eat lunch and cuddle their animals during class time.

2. Wearing pajamas to class:

Getting to wear comfortable clothes to class instead of dressing to impress professors and peers is seen as an advantage to many students. Haven’t we all wanted to roll out of bed five minutes before class and show up in our pajamas one day?

3. Sleeping in:

Speaking of rolling out of bed, sleeping in is another benefit of online classes. Some professors have made their classes later in the day or may not be meeting live online during class time at all, they are recording lectures. Students are able to sleep in longer than they would have if they were attending classes on campus and can even go back to sleep directly after class.

4. Not having to drive to class:

For commuters, some of that extra sleep comes from less time spent on freeways. Between saving gas money and time out of their day, this can be a welcome change.

5. More time with loved ones:

While this one depends on the intensity of the online courses, students in general have more flexibility in their schedule. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, precious time with loved ones is more available than usual for many people.

CONS:

1. Not seeing friends in person:

The biggest con to not being on campus anymore has to be not seeing friends in person, according to the survey responses. Unexpectedly having to say goodbye to friends can be devastating, especially for those who graduate at the end of this semester. Missing out on in-person social interaction can make others feel isolated. Fortunately, students are still able to see each other on computer and cellphone screens.

2. Change of preferred learning environment:

One of the things that makes attending classes on campus worth it is the overall environment and the appeal of in-person education. The switch to a virtual classroom has affected students who may focus more effectively in person.

3. Adapting to a new structure:

Online courses are not for everyone, which is something every university admits and something students are warned about when it comes to hybrid courses. The transition from having a regular routine of going to classes in person to suddenly restructuring their days to finish online can make students anxious.

4. Self discipline becomes vital:

With online classes, personal responsibility becomes even more important. Staying focused is crucial to a successful semester. Although many professors are understanding during this global crisis, they cannot excuse every time a student turns something in late, especially if it becomes a habit.

5. For seniors, not a fairy-tale ending:

For all of the graduating seniors, investing four years into the university only to leave abruptly during their final semester makes it difficult to close their experience the way they always expected, with proper goodbyes and graduation celebrations. Of course, none of this is the university’s fault, but it is understandable that students may be disappointed by postponed graduation ceremonies and a sudden end to the on-campus experience they loved.

Although moving classes online was unexpected, the university is fulfilling its promise of providing a high level of education and gave professors a week to adapt their courses to these changes. Even though this is an uncertain, unprecedented time, students can still finish out the semester with success.

About Misty Severi

Staff Writer

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