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Social Side Effects of Zoom Courses

by Madison Tavera

For many students in these uncertain times, the COVID-19 pandemic has altered numerous aspects of our lives. Education is an important topic that has been remodeled into a new normalcy.

This fall, classrooms are now conducted with either remote learning or a mixture of remote learning and in-person classes with social distancing and masks strictly enforced.

As a college senior, I am not a fan of remote learning and miss meeting face-to-face with my classmates and professors. Getting to see my classmates and having conversations with my professors was a key element in embracing the college experience.

Along with this, forming relationships with other students in your major and getting to know your professor was another perk that allowed students to create genuine connections and friendships that could benefit them in the future.

Student engagement has changed drastically and for many professors it is not a requirement for your camera to be turned on. Taking classes at home has its perks but also many distractions, and can make retaining information more difficult.

I know that I am guilty of not taking notes during the entire class because I find myself getting distracted and wanting to work on other assignments or household chores.

Online classes has affected everyone’s social skills and without seeing many of my classmates face-to-face, there is a lack of emotional connection.

As a result of the absence of physically being in person with classmates, students bond together over group chats through apps like GroupMe. These services allow students to discuss among themselves and ask questions about upcoming assignments. Having group chats makes class feel somewhat normal as they allow you to be reminded you are not alone and your fellow students are in the same boat.

With the many curveballs the world has been throwing at us, it is nice to see students making an effort to go out of their way to try and create friendships, study groups and most importantly, an outlet utilized to excel in class.

Students are now faced with the difficult task of balancing their personal lives, possibly a job and online classes. I am taking six classes this semester and find it hard to keep all the due dates in order. Organization is key to having and maintaining a successful semester. Especially in these uncertain times, having control over one aspect such as class work can help relieve students of anxiety.

It will be interesting to see what the future of education will look like after COVID-19 subsides. I hope for students of all ages that schools will soon again take place in an in-person setting. I can’t imagine growing up in elementary and middle school without my favorite classes of recess, gym and lunch.

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