i Online Classes and Helicopter Teachers | College Writing: Debate(s) In Higher Education
30. October 2016 · Comments Off · Categories: Blog Post 2

Sydney Pfotenhauer

When it comes to the education that is needed in society, there are a number of things that can go wrong when trying to achieve that education. It could be from the way a teacher hovers over a student or not to whether the class is online or not. These are all things that can affect the learning environment in positive or negative ways. There are positives and negatives to the way teachers teach and if a class is online or not that makes good or bad impacts on the education that people try to achieve. Teachers that hover over their students to help them learn and classes that are taken online weaken the education that students are trying to succeed in.

The way a teacher teaches the necessary material can make sometimes make or break the education that is being learned. It goes from the actions that a teacher makes when trying to help a student to what teachers think is the best techniques in teaching their students certain material. When teachers are too involved in their student’s education, they can harm student’s learning capabilities. Steven Conn wrote an article about what he describes as “helicopter teachers.” He talks about how these are the teachers that hover over their students and for some it helps their learning but for most it affects them from being able to hit their peak in their learning.

I have found these types of teachers not to be helpful to my learning as I would get a good grade in the class but wouldn’t learn anything. When I was a freshman in high school, I had an English teacher that would be considered a helicopter teacher. This class ended up being one of my easiest classes. We would have to write a reflection on an article each week and she wouldn’t really grade it. It got to the point that some people would write things that had absolutely no relation to the topic of the article and would still receive one hundred percent on what they wrote. I also didn’t ever get much feedback on the essays that I wrote for the class. This caught up to me my junior year when I took AP English. My teacher for that class was a lot better but I did horrible in the class because my writing was not good enough. Having that teacher freshman year for English was not good and it made me fall behind in getting better at writing. From this experience of “helicopter teachers” I have not been able to reach my potential in writing because I have been set back many years in my writing capabilities.

Online classes can be just as bad as helicopter teachers. When it comes to online classes, I have found that it is a lot more difficult to take them online. For a class, I had to take a class online to experience the differences between online classes and traditional classes in a classroom. I found that it was a lot easier to get distracted and when I was done I didn’t know for sure if I was positively done with the lesson. There is also the fact that it would be more difficult to talk to a professor outside of class as they could be across the country. There is also a loss of being able to discuss topics with classmates during the class. This makes it more difficult to get help and more difficult to interact with classmates. When it comes to my learning, I need to be able to talk to my professors, and I learn from what other people say in class. Without this, it is easier to not get as good of an education.

Having online learning integrated into the typical class can also be helpful though. For example, Graeme Wood talks about Minerva, an online course program. Through this, classes can be smaller and the class that he explains has up to eight students. The professor has the ability through this to put students in groups and they are able to interact with each other. This seems to be the way to go as everything is starting to become more technology based. There will always be set backs when it comes to online classes, but there are still some things that can help the traditional classroom classes that can use technology to help compared to having nothing with technology at all.

Online classes are a lot less expensive when you compare it to a typical college. Sometimes the class can even be free. This makes people want to take these classes online instead of in the classroom, because they can take the same classes but at a much cheaper price. This can be helpful, but at the same time isn’t the way to go, because the quality of the education may not be as good as going to a true four-year college. Going to a typical four-year college can be beneficial when it comes to the quality of the education being received, while online classes are an inexpensive form of higher education.

I have found that online education isn’t the way to go personally. I found that I had a more difficult time paying attention to the lesson online for a class I was taking, as I kept on getting distracted from my surroundings. Learning in class also helps me to make sure that I get everything done still. When I took an online class to see how it is done there are many things that don’t really go well with the way that there is more time to get everything done. When I took this I put off the lesson until late the night before I needed to have it done because of the work I needed to get done for my other classes. In a traditional classroom though it is easier to stay on schedule, because of the time period that there always is for the class. It seems that learning in class helps me retain the information that I am taught better also. Online classes completely depend on the person and the way that the class in general is taught. It can be difficult to tell if a certain online class is the right class to take. These online classes don’t seem to be the smartest idea with how complex they can be.

The idea of online classes and helicopter teachers are important to talk about, as both can be good or bad for certain people. If there were no longer teachers because of helicopter teachers, there would be only online classes and some people don’t perform as well in those classes. If the idea of online classes was gotten rid of, there would be people that might not be able to do as well if they are better with online classes though. These are both major issues to talk about, but online classes and helicopter teachers are needed for some people to do well still though.

The things that come with college education are extremely important. Whether it is the way a teacher teaches a class or the difference between online classes and typical in class classes. Preferences can play a big role in the decisions about these topics that can affect education. Personally, I believe that helicopter teachers and online classes are two major things that can eradicate the education needed for after college. This is why online classes and helicopter teachers can be the worst thing for education.

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