Schools have been conducting online classes during covid-19 pandemic, however, students are finding it very difficult to cope up with sudden switch over to online classes and limitations of online schooling.
Given below are some limitations that arise during online group classes. Bringing forth these limitations will help schools, parents and teachers to better understand the problem and hence, to find better solutions to overcome these problems. Solutions to these issues/problems are also given.
First, drawbacks of online school classes in large group :
- Having so many students in an online class, creates disruption in connectivity on account of low internet speed and poor internet infrastructure in the country. As a result, internet fluctuations lead to disruption in audio, hence, students start taking disinterest in the class as the students are unable to comprehend what is being taught by the teacher.
- Lack of effective interaction between the students and teacher due to large class size which is from 40 to 200 students needs to be addressed.
- Lack of technical support staff and unavailability of online support team or online control room to co-ordinate with the students and teachers at beginning of class or during the class, further compounds the problem. Many kinds of issues arise during an online class, constant online support to teacher and students is must in order to conduct the classes smoothly.
- Lack of Teacher training for online classes : Many teachers are not comfortable with online tools & technology as it has come suddenly without any prior exposure or training for online classes.
- Most teachers are habitual off writing on offline boards in their own original flow of teaching. Teachers are not having well planned original contents for online delivery. Teachers are simply taking out from Google various power point presentations, PDF documents, You tube video etc to conduct the classes. Such online academic contents need to be sorted out qualitatively so that content planning does not come in way of lecture planning.
- Students are overburdened with assignments.
- Use of overburdened insecure platform of Zoom Online Classes : Zoom is sudenly highly overburdened due to its over use all over the world as its free of cost and easy to use. However, overburdened platforms start generating its own technical issues like problem in login, audio issues etc.
- Lack of sufficient break between classes generates eye strain and screen stress among students
Solutions to Problems of ineffective online school classes:
- Keep the group class size not more than 10 to 15 students in class. It will keep the internet fluctuations at bay and will not create audio-video disruption during the class. 1 on 1 online classes is answer to ineffective online school classes in large group
- Small class size shall also enhance better interaction between students and teacher.
- Keep online support staff for every class to sort out the issues that arise during the class. It will help in resolving temporary internet issue and will generate better co-ordination between the students and teacher for smooth conduct of class.
- Teachers must take proper training. Schools must enable training support to teachers own their own or with the help of existing online education companies in the country.
- Teachers should prepare their own notes and do research for quality content on Google on any topic before taking the class in order to achieve content planning and lecture planning.
- Do not over-burden the students with assignments.
- Use alternative online classes platforms other than Zoom. Many of them are free like Zoom, however, others also provide premium quality services at some cost.
- Give Sufficient break between classes.
In short term, schools may find it expensive or requiring more hard work to keep the class size small. But currently there is not alternative to this if schools want to deliver quality online classes to its students.
Or over a period of times, students will loose interest to online school classes and will desert such classes merely as an eyewash by schools.
Dr. R. Singh
Director Teaching Care online Classes