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College Student Opinions on Virtual Learning

By: Rebeccah Fleischmann 

The Coronavirus pandemic has taken the world by storm, causing millions of students to transition to online learning. This has been a difficult adjustment for everyone, especially for college students. One Rice University student feels that “online college is a bit stranger than in person. It’s hard not to be able to see everyone as often as you used to.” For many, the pandemic has added an extra element of stress on their daily lives and for college students, this is no different. This Rice student points out how “collaborating with others is incredibly difficult and usually not possible, so it’s more stressful as well.” Their statement highlights how social life is different in college than in high school. Transitioning into college means that you no longer have your parents to rely on and creating a support group of peers can be vital to your happiness and success in college. It can be difficult to stay in touch while staying home, but for another college student, this is not his primary concern with virtual learning. Compared to in-person classes, a University of Arizona student finds virtual learning to be a “rip-off” since they still have to pay the same tuition as they did for in-person classes, but only receive one part of the whole college experience. This sentiment is echoed by many college students, as several students and their parents have negotiated with their colleges to reduce their tuition for “Zoom University.” A Princeton University student sums up virtual learning as a “poor substitute for college classes, but no substitute for the college experience.” However, one Rice University student did find a silver lining in their virtual learning experience. “It’s good that we were allowed to finish the semester and my professors still gave lectures and I had my textbooks, so I was still able to get all of the information and learn.” Despite the challenges and stressors that online learning brings, students are making the best of the situation and are grateful for the ability to stay on track in their academic pursuits.

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