Summer Classes Face-off Students debate if summer classes make the grade – Against summer classes

Being the busy bee that I am, I thought it was best to take the course Understanding Politics as an online class during summer to fulfill a core requirement. Since I had a less than stellar experience in the classroom for a similar course during the previous semester, I thought that taking a class via the computer during summer break would relieve some anxiety I had about the subject. Even with keeping this in mind, there were still a few difficulties I encountered while taking my class. If students have a choice between taking an actual course at school and taking it online during the summer, they should probably take it in a classroom.
Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of taking an online summer course is the lack of face-to-face interaction between you and your professor. If I was having an issue with a certain aspect of the course, it was difficult to have the same sort of personalized attention that I would receive in a classroom during the school year. Even when I wrote to my professor to better understand the task at hand, it was still not as helpful as it would have been if the conversation had been in person.
Another reason that I would not recommend taking an online course during the summer would be because of something that is usually essential for doing well in school — time management. You need to know how to manage your time in the summer so that you can focus on your assignments. However, if you are anything like me and you have a jam-packed schedule between working and volunteering, making time to do your assignments at a decent time (and at a decent hour) may be a personal inconvenience. For instance, I would use one of my only free days to begin working on my assignments, and then use other random bouts of free time to tighten up the loose ends in my writing.
Another issue with time management is procrastination. Many assignments close after a certain amount of time, causing them to be inaccessible to those who put them off. There are also many distractions on the computer such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, making procrastination a lot more prevalent. Although devoting time to studies can sometimes be annoying, especially when you want to soak up the sun, it is a test of your dedication to your schooling.
Although taking a summer class online helped me fulfill the class that gave me the most anxiety, there were still many issues I had with the online class. Not being able to talk directly to my professor about any problems I had with the material was a huge disadvantage. Also, with my busy schedule, it sometimes made it challenging to find time to write. This ultimately tested me as a student. I would advise others to stick to sitting in a desk and learning during the school year instead of doing it behind a computer screen during the summer.
-J’na Jefferson
Junior journalism major
Printed in the 9/4/13 edition.

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