A Bone to Pick

29 02 2012

Stop being so bratty, boys!

Okay, after yet another Skype conversation with my sons, I’m fed up. This face-to-face interaction beats the cell phone exchanges from my oldest son’s first term, but that’s not the point. I think they like to make me irritated.  I’m pretty sure if we were on the phone and couldn’t see each other, a certain topic wouldn’t be brought up.

“Well, I’ve taken both online and on campus classes, so I know how much easier an online course is.” This from my oldest son who had a 4.0 in high school and finally got straight As in college for the first time – last term, fall of his junior year.

Comment number two is courtesy of my youngest, a college freshman (18-year-olds think they know everything!) “I’d ace my tests, too, if they were open book like yours.”Justification of poor test score or attempt to discredit my online education? I’m not sure I even care which it is, because either one makes me a little hot under the collar.

From Other Adults

I work at a school. Every teacher there has to take classes in order to keep their license current.  Many of them have taken online classes and most of them take classes at a campus, usually during the summer. How about if we have some of them add their expertise to this discussion?

“I don’t know how you can do online classes. If I’m not scheduled to be there at a certain time, I’d forget to show up completely.”

“I need to go to class so I can hear what the professor’s saying and soak up the discussion around me.  Reading things on the internet wouldn’t help me get it at all.”

“Plain and simple, I’m an audio learner, so unless they’re going to record lectures for me to listen to, I’m not going to get a thing out of it.”

“Online classes are too much work. Professors expect more written assignments from you because they can’t see that you’re making an effort otherwise.”

Chime In

Now that both sides of the story have been laid out, I think we can narrow the focus. What makes online education seem too simple?

  1. Open book tests
  2. You don’t have to go to class

On the other hand, what makes taking online classes seem more challenging?

  1. More reading
  2. More written assignments
  3. No face-to-face interaction with students or professors
  4. No set schedule
  5. No audio input for people who learn best by listening

If I tally up those votes, online college classes appear to be more challenging at a ratio of 5 to 2. Perhaps this method of calculation seems unfair and doesn’t apply proper weight to the individual arguments. If it supports my position (which it does), then the methodology works perfectly well in my mind.

If you have a comment on this debate, please feel free to post it here. Which is more challenging? If you’re like me, you think both avenues present obstacles, and both offer benefits. In either case, some things will prove more difficult. On either path a respectable education can be obtained by the faithful pursuer.

My thoughts to those demeaning sons of mine (after questioning the ability to teach of the person who taught them respect for their elders) can be expressed simply, “You’re just jealous!”

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4 responses

3 03 2012
Bethany

Hello Dear – As I am going to attempt to try the online schooling with Marylhurst starting Spring term, this blog does not make me overly confident…thanks. Fortunately I am going for the Blended program that gives the option of online, evenings, or Saturdays, however the student wants to schedule them. I am very nervous about the additional work time and online interaction, but think that not having to drive to school and back makes up for it. That being said, I did try online classes with UoP (Phoenix) and gave up. With their accelerated pace it was much easier to attend in person.

Don’t worry, someday both boys will be older and wiser….it’s just not today. When the time comes you will have the opportunity to remind them of their lovely conversations from now 🙂

4 03 2012
sharonhughson

Bethany-
You’re extremely organized and you have a supportive husband. You will do just fine with online classes. I have complete confidence in your abilities, even if you don’t.

Mostly, I’m just teasing my sons, because I think they’re just teasing me. Or – they better be!

5 03 2012
Kyle

Tanner’s gotta be kidding.

My Journalism 102 class marked the first time in history I had to pull out another notebook before the semester ended. Online classes are challenging at times.

I learn a lot better from online classes truthfully, but I just don’t see myself being Americanized enough through these courses. I love going to school now because most people take it seriously and want to put serious effort into group projects.

Nice blog, keep ’em coming.

6 03 2012
sharonhughson

Kyle- It’s nice to see someone under 30 reading my blog! Jeff says the boys are just teasing me about online classes being so easy. What I know: if I had to go to a traditional classroom to get my degree, it wouldn’t happen; not enough hours in my day.

Keep the comments coming!

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