ωΣℓcomε T0 Mγ αrτicℓE that contains all of the online science student’s complaints about the science program they had to take this year (Just kidding). For those who did not understand the reference, this school year the 10th-12th graders had to take either chemistry or physics in an online course that was supervised by Liberty University. In addition, students would also meet once a week to learn more and have an actual hands-on lab with Mr. Schwartz.
Since this was a new change to all students, there was some frustration with the program and its curriculum. These frustrations were caused by bad formatting and ambiguous questions, questions on quizzes that did not have to do with the material, late responses from teachers, insufficient lab simulations, and other problems. “It does get frustrating with the relatively high frequency of bad questions,” said senior, Trent Morris. Students also felt very pressured and stressed as they would have to make time everyday to finish assignments, if not finished in class, and complete the weekly lab reports for Mr. Schwartz before Friday’s class.
Even though there was plenty of complaining that took place over the year,there were also some positive aspects to the online classes. The material in the curriculum was very informative and accurate, and reasonably simple to understand. If students had any questions on the material, they could email the teacher or ask questions to a group of other teachers. The students also enjoyed the amount of time they were given to take tests and quizzes, which is more than than a normal class period. Another positive aspect was the amount of material covered. Since the program had a fast-paced and tight lesson schedule, the course was able to cover more material than a class with a real teacher who works with the pace of all of the students.
Though some students wished they had a real teacher for their science class, there were also a great deal of benefits in using the online college program. Mr. Warner says they chose a college program for many reasons. They chose Liberty because the college offers many different and diverse classes to take, and the credits received for completing their course can be transferred into any college the student chooses. “We chose to offer online science because it exposes our students to online blended schooling, which most colleges today will have as a part of their curriculum. We also chose it because it prepares students not only for other colleges, but for a work environment as well, which uses this kind of format,” said Mr. Warner.
One of the biggest reasons why the online program was chosen was because it makes the student more independent. Due to the tight schedule of the course, it forces students to make time in their schedule to complete their work. Although many students were somewhat disgruntled with the new science program this year, it taught us many new things and helped us improve our independence, which will certainly be a key factor for living on our own one day.