6 Serious Challenges that Students at Home Experience from Online Classes
There are many ways to learn and many places to learn in. The beauty of learning is that it is too vast and endless for you to stop yearning to grow more. In this day and age when innovations in technology and developments in the Internet are oh-so-impressive, online classes have become highly possible. Even from different locations and time zones, people can teach, study and learn together.
Traditional schooling is peerless, and it stands as the standard and the most preferred schooling type. Its efficiency cannot be doubted because the community, the environment and the experiences obtained from school cannot be exactly earned from anywhere else. Most people still choose traditional schooling over any other means, but undeniably, online learning also has an important place.
Well, online learning is very influential and beneficial. It is perfect for students who want to learn from a foreign educator living in a foreign country. Parents who decide to homeschool their kids can greatly benefit from it as well. Moreover, for life-threatening global issues like the COVID-19 pandemic, technology and the Internet are the most essential tools for teachers to still be able to teach students from their own homes. Distant learning is the only way, and employing online classes is the safest and best option both for schools and for their learners.
While online classes have big advantages, it cannot be denied that they present some troubles to students too. This piece aims to enlighten readers, especially non students, that just because online classes allow students to learn at home does not mean everything is perfect. Some professors tend to give school tasks which are thrice more than what they give when they are physically going to school. That’s because some think that online learning is just full comfort. The truth is that this is hard for students and for parents, too, so schools must also be well-informed.
Here is a must-read list that will explain how online classes are not as simple for students as some people say. Below are 6 serious challenges that students at home experience from online classes.
1 – LACK OF FUNCTIONAL DIGITAL DEVICE
Students can only attend online classes if they have a functional digital device to use. Otherwise, there is no way they can learn virtually. This is the first and the biggest challenge for students when it comes to distant learning.
Well, it is a given that students will not even grab the option to enroll when they themselves know that they do not have any gadget. On the other hand, for students who have devices to use, the common problem is the functionality.
Some have smartphones, but their smartphones are outdated, almost broken or not capable of downloading the applications needed for online class sessions. Others have personal computers and laptops which are really old, slow and faulty. For households with more than one student, sharing of devices for online classes is complicated.
2 – UNSTABLE INTERNET CONNECTION
Next to the importance of electronic devices for online classes, Internet connection must be available. Fortunately, most households today have Wi-Fi. Unfortunately, some of them are experiencing unstable Internet connection.
This is a major setback for students with fluctuating Internet access because they do not get the best quality of reception. Common scenarios include suddenly getting disconnected to the virtual room and encountering choppy audio and video during classes.
What’s more, poor Internet connection obstructs students’ productivity. Instead of being able to study and do their tasks immediately, they wait for the connection to be fixed or to get better after some hours. Especially when they have to do Internet-based research and to download large files, it is definitely taxing. Sadly, slow Internet performance slows down students’ performance too.
3 – HUGE TECHNICAL PROBLEMS DURING EXAMINATIONS
Still related to technical matters in online classes, technical problems namely lagging and crashing during examinations are among the most heart-breaking challenges for students.
If approaching the end of an examination, the Internet connection suddenly malfunctions, there is a possibility for the student’s answers to not be recorded. This is especially when an online learning portal is used. He/She may need to start answering from the beginning again if the data were not saved. Although repeating is fine because there’s no other way, still, the effort and the time spent on answering the examination get wasted.
4 – LACK OF MOTIVATION DUE TO BEING IN THE COMFORT ZONE
Of course, aside from the external elements that deliver difficulties to students in online classes, internal concerns are present too. The latter include lack of motivation and laziness due to being inside their comfort zones.
The house is always an individual’s primary comfort place. It is possible for some students to feel slack and unenthusiastic about their online classes because they are just at home. They wear cozy house clothes, and their teachers and classmates will not even know. They have not brushed their teeth and removed their morning glory yet before facing their screens, and no one in the class will even find out.
Although students should not involve other unrelated activities while online classes are going on, some pupils multitask by doing something else such as playing games, using social media and eating. While this is doable, it drags students’ attention to somewhere else. That may lead to idleness, distractions and lack of keen interest in what’s happening in their virtual lessons.
5 – EXHAUSTION FROM LONG HOURS OF SCREEN EXPOSURE DAILY
If you think that online classes are not tiring out students just because they are sitting down at home, you are wrong.
Long hours of screen exposure everyday is exhausting. When you add together the number of hours of the online class proper and the after-class virtual duties to complete assignments, you will realize how tiring it can be. Furthermore, what if your kids have other learning courses beyond their main school because they need enhancements? What if they have virtual English tutoring sessions and musical workshops after online classes too? Students really spend long hours in front of their screens, and it’s not very healthy.
Tired and numb hands, eye strain, blurry eyesight, headaches and back pains can be results of too much computer and mobile use. Students in online learning are prone to these. Because they are physically inactive while mentally in full swing with eyes wide open, they may experience fatigue.
6 – FAMILY PROBLEMS INSIDE THE HOUSE
The last point may be quite far from the previous numbers, but this is something that many overlook and take lightly. Family problems display a heavyweight challenge to students learning online from their homes.
The students are inside their house, so whatever happens in it, they are directly affected. When they are inside the school, they are not completely surrounded by their family’s issues, so they are able to focus better in a different environment. When they are in a chaotic home, it is impossible for them to be unaffected.
Emotional sores are hindrances to students’ focus and wellness while doing online classes at home. What’s more difficult for those who experience these is that they don’t talk about their problems, so they often choose to set them aside and keep a strong face through it all.
ONLINE CLASS CHALLENGES
The digital era and its unprecedented products are to be thanked for the convenience they present to people. Human labor is enhanced and is made easier in so many ways. Even education from afar is possible. The presence of online classes is truly helpful, and it becomes a necessity in a lot of instances.
Nonetheless, the challenges that students experience from online learning must not be ignored. Not all of these children are skillful in the use of technological devices. Diverse situations in life and at home have a lot of say too. Unexpected demands of some technical factors affect learning quality. Virtual communication has its flip sides as well.
The life of students enrolled in online classes is not as easy peasy as some people think it is. Knowing this truth will help schools to more sensibly understand learners, to provide better quality of teaching and to assist them whenever they are encountering such difficulties.
In that way, students can become more motivated to study despite the existence of some holes. It becomes relieving to know that their educators are concerned about how the weight of online classes burdens students too. That can drive them to still do their best always because there are kind people who are aware of their struggles as students in online classes and who are ready to assist and support.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Nicole Ann Pore is a writer, an events host and a voice over artist. Quality and well-researched writing is her worthwhile avenue to enlighten and delight others about things that matter. She is a daytime writer for InFlow Education, expert tutoring services in Australia Nicole graduated Cum Laude from De La Salle University Manila, Philippines with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts.