i What is Online Education Really Doing? | COLLEGE WRITING: DEBATE(S) IN HIGHER EDCUATION

Solomon Brown

The increased use of technology in and outside of the classroom is making it difficult for student to get the most quality education possible for them. Society is starting to move in a direction of seclusion where people only communicate through their phones, computers, etc. Personally I’m not a huge fan of being on my phone all the time, I don’t really like twitter, Facebook, or anything else along those lines and it’s hard to have a conversation with somebody who does. It doesn’t make sense to carry out a conversation with somebody who only cares about what’s happening on their phone, does it? Communicating only through technology is harmful because we live in a world full of other people that we need to be able to verbally talk to, and interact with in order to be successful. Students who only engaged in online class would be losing the vital time they need face to face with a teacher in a classroom. By putting students in front of a screen all day instead of working in tandem with their peers takes away the opportunity to become advanced in the skills of things like reading body language and communicating face to face with superiors and peers which are essential to be able to function in todays increasingly competitive job market.

People are constantly on their phones or tablets and they aren’t getting any one on one contact with their peers anymore and I’m scared of where that’s going to get my generation. Online schooling would only further the digression we’ve made this far in theses areas. One example of this is the fact that while I was trying to take the online course about what a good argument is and how to come up with one, I was constantly confused on at least one of the points that the lesson was trying to make however there was nobody who I could ask about what they meant because there was no teacher or classmates. Talking things over with people in a classroom is a big part of learning and I completely lost that aspect of schooling while taking online courses. I was on my own and that’s hard for someone at my age.

Another huge problem I faced was all of the distractions I was left to deal with while trying to take a class on my computer. I continuously kept texting, looking at twitter, or checking Facebook. No matter what I tried I could not focus on the task at hand, and that, at least for me, would become a huge problem in the future as I tried to continue my schooling somewhere outside of a classroom. Its basically second nature, for young people especially, to constantly be connected to some sort of device and I don’t think it would be the best idea to give them another reason to be on them more.

Nowadays I would rather have a conversation with an adult rather than someone my own age because of the fact that they seem to have some sort of grasp on what reality actually is. Half the time when you try and talk to somebody they seem to be to caught up with something on their phones, they in an essence tell you that you aren’t as important as a 6 second video. This is exactly where I think online schooling is going to take us. When your at and age when you’re so vulnerable to views and ideology of others, it would be in your best interest to be in an institution full people who have had years of school so that they have the skills to teach you. They can see when you’re struggling and when you may need a little extra help and they can do there best to help you understand and that’s something that you can’t do in an online institution, and most importantly there are people there. The same people who you will have to spend the rest of your life living with, learning with, and growing with. People who you can have an educated conversation with, people who can help you become a better you and that’s why I advocate for a teacher and a classroom as opposed to an online class.

I’m not on my own either, my classmate Bridgette Leen agrees that she would rather have a classroom experience with a teacher because without one she feels lost, “I like to have a teacher in person incase I have any questions”. It’s understandable that somebody would want help when they feel alone. Even USA Today’s poll agrees with us, “78% of more than 1,000 students surveyed still believe it is easier to learn in a classroom”. That’s a lot more people against it than for it and it’s the people who actually matter, the people who have to use it. It is time to begin listening to the main consumer of schooling the students and these numbers show that they are for in class learning as compared to online classes.

 We live in a world full of people that, if we want to be successful, we need to learn to communicate in a healthy way with. We need to make sure that our children learn what it means to be a human. We cannot allow them to be raised by computers. People need to make sure that our students become the best individuals possible. This includes making sure that our students can receive the most quality education possible. The increased use of technology especially in school is going to be a huge proponent of keeping our generation from becoming the best individuals that they can be. Education as a whole has to make sure that technology doesn’t corrupt the learning of young minds. People also need to come together to make sure that the classroom and teacher aspect of schooling never dies because without it our future is in jeopardy of not receiving the quality education that they deserve.

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