Isabelle Hancock and Grayson Skweres
Starting Nov. 30, the Florida Southern College community will solely operate in a remote fashion until the start of the spring semester in 2021.
The first portion of the fall 2020 semester has been a mix of remote and in-person learning, but with students going back to join their families, the school decided not to have student return to campus following the holiday.
“Thanksgiving break begins on November 25, 2020, and all classes, with the exception of those in some graduate programs, will shift to remote instruction beginning on November 30, 2020. The Monday (11/23) and Tuesday (11/24) classes before Thanksgiving break must be in session.”
For students who are already learning remotely, this is not much of a change, and the on-campus students seen to be on board with the decision, recognizing the need for safety. But as we move closer to all undergraduates going remote for the remainder of the semester, the on-campus students are curious about how the rest of their semester will be.
Senior Blair Schoen attends classes on campus and is worried about the transition, but believes that the school has planned it well.
“I already know it’s going to be bumpy, but I feel like the transition has been planned by the school and we’re just going to have to be flexible,” Schoen said.
The school is taking precautions that are put in place to keep students safe, but also truing to give them the best education possible with the current circumstances.
“I think it’s smart because there is a lot of opportunity for people to get the virus when traveling home and then spreading it to others if we were to go back on campus,” junior Emma Shaddix said.
Some students who have been taking remote classes all semester have found remote learning easier and more comfortable. For others, remote learning has been quite a challenge. Regardless, most of these students have found ways to get the most out of this situation.
“Something that keeps me focused during my classes is playing music quietly in the background,” sophomore Morgan Shelton said. “I think it’s important for students to remember to take notes during class. Your professor may not see your hand raised as easily anymore, so if you write down your question when you have it, you can remember to ask it later.”
Professors have to prepare to teach differently than they have for the first part of the semester.
“I believe it is the best decision for the safety of our students, faculty, and staff,” Assistant Professor of Communications Dr. Katherine Loh said. “With two weeks of school left after Thanksgiving, moving to full remote learning allows students and faculty to concentrate on finishing out the semester on a strong and healthy note.”
Loh cited the abrupt switch from in-person instruction to remote instruction last spring as signs for optimism that the change will happen smoothly this semester.
“We have been preparing for this for a while,” Loh said.
Students and instructors are more familiar with platforms like Zoom, Canvas, Slack and Teams to complete work and communicate. This change may be stressful for some students, but with tips and help from peers and professors, remote learning can be manageable.