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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Discovering pros, cons of online learning


Azul Sordo/The Collegian
Dariana Jimenez studies for her online classes in the fall semester. Making the adjustment to virtual learning has had positive and negative effects on TCC students.

Mandatory virtual learning under COVID-19 was business as usual for some students, but for others, the transition wasn’t as seamless.

“I am a visual learner, so I learn best when I am in the classroom,” SE student Hannia Alvarez said. “I had to drop out this semester because I was not learning a single thing.”

Alvarez said she would often postpone assignments out of uncertainty, which only contributed to the stress of first time virtual learning.

“Prior to the pandemic I only took classes in person,” she said. “I was slacking so much online, I ended up making the decision to drop.”

NW student Kaylie Houston said her choice to take classes online had a lot to do with the ability to work within her schedule instead of being obligated to be in a classroom on a certain day at a specific time. She said virtual learning may not be optimal for everyone.

Some students found the experience of virtual learning was made unique by the pandemic. “I took online classes prior to the pandemic,” NW student Chloe Smith said. “I did so more for basic classes like history and a few math classes. However, before this semester, I’d never taken any science courses online.”

Smith said she chose to take online classes in the past to save the time of traveling to campus since she worked full time and was facing the possibility of a move. She said her online experience this year was

different from past semesters, and communication was poor.

For students with experience in online coursework, some aspects of virtual learning presented new challenges.

“I have mixed feelings about the proctored tests,” Houston said. “On some level, it makes me more nervous having something recording my every move and eye movement.”

Houston said she thinks online proctoring has prevented teachers from feeling comfortable with allowing people to use notes on their tests. For Alvarez, virtual learning was a missed opportunity to meet and interact with others in real life.

“I don’t feel like I missed out on anything this semester that can’t be made up,” Alvarez said, “except for maybe meeting new people.”

Some are walking away with a different perspective.

“I just transferred to Texas A&M Corpus Christi and I do feel as if I missed out on learning this year,” Alvarez said. “You simply do not have the same conversations online that you could face to face. This semester was OK.”

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