I’m sure we can all agree that ‘Asynchronous’ classes has it’s fair share of hurdles such as digital fatigue but nonetheless it can come with benefits such as being able to access resources wherever you are. In this article, I reflect on my journey of ‘asynchronous’ classes and online university.
Online Learning Anxieties
The start of this year was nerve racking for all of us and most of us were not looking forward to online classes as it meant we were missing out on interacting with our peers.
For me, I was hesitant to change at first as I wasn’t sure how I would cope with the challenges online learning would pose, such as technology fatigue.
I’m sure many of us were dubious of what online classes would be like, words such as ‘asynchronous’ adding to our bewilderment. Additionally we were clouded with thoughts such as how are we going to interact with our friends without seeing one another on campus? And last but not least, how are we meant to present ourselves during online lectures and seminars?
Though online ‘asynchronous’ classes most definitely aren’t the same as face-to-face lectures and seminars, many of us have learnt to adapt to our new learning environment and make do with the resources we have and most importantly, we have made it through this year without giving up which is a huge step forward for our next academic year where we can adjust to learning online and in person better.
For example, online classes mean we can focus better on lectures as recordings are easily accessible which means we can play them back and retain all the information we may have initially missed the first time. It also saves us time when looking back at notes as everything will be clear and easy to follow.
We’ve all had that awkward silence in online classes.
That’s why a struggle that many of us faced during online lectures and seminars was the interactivity as they felt as though the online environment did not give them a platform to interact or it just didn’t feel the same as in person lectures where contributing seems a lot easier for some people.
However, lecturers have made many adjustments to make our learning experience a better one such as the use of polls to make interacting with one another easier in asynchronous seminars.
While being in different locations behind a computer screen may detach us from one another, the ability to all come together virtually has given us access to many opportunities.
For instance, online learning has enabled us to have a lot more guest lecturers than before sharing their words of wisdom enabling us to get a wholesome degree despite the many challenges we have faced this year. There is still an opportunity for us to learn as students, and even more so, to build connections throughout our time at university. But, fear not, face to face learning will soon resume and we will all be able to come back to some sort of normality soon, whenever that may be.