2020 Struggles: My Thoughts on the Ongoing Online Classes

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With University of Delhi starting the new academic year online this time, my academic schedule has been nothing but overwhelming. Not going to lie but online classes are not that easy. As a student whose education has always primary been conventionally carried out, I am finding the new normal a little difficult to cope with. Fortunately, I don’t have to face technical problems like bad internet connection and frequent power cuts. However, even without such problems, the whole scenario of online classes is currently not a fairyland.

Don’t get me wrong, it is not like the situation is extremely bad. There are a lot of things which I absolutely love about online classes which are nowhere to be found in regular college days. Yes, I am talking about how you can just switch off the camera and nobody will get to know how zoned out you are. It is that simple. You could literally doze off during your lecture and nobody would know a thing. Coming from a very privileged experience, the sheer happiness of attending classes in an AC room is incomparable. Online classes are the only resort to the unbearable heat we had to go through earlier.

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And the travel, yes, the travel. The fact that I don’t have to stand in the crowdiest metros for an hour, makes me not want to go to college at all. I would rather choose sitting at home and attending classes over changing metros any day!

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However, in all honesty, online classes indeed are a menace. Thankfully, organisations like SFI Hindu College have been highlighting the insensitive nature of the new time-tables. Online classes are already an exclusionary form of education and with continuous lectures for 3-4 hours, everything worsens. By the time the tutorial classes will start, we will have to sit through 5-7 lectures each day. This incessant schedule does not only take into account the lack of a good internet connection most of the students have, but is also increasingly laborious.

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Time-tables have been made in such a way that they do not give a chance to students to have something as basic as a short break in between incessant classes. Hours and hours of screen time give headaches to many students and also do have other such consequences on their health. A student-friendly time-table which includes a good amount of time for students to take a break, should not be a lot to ask for.

Students who do not have a stable internet connection and are losing out academically should also be looked out for. Not to mention the unfriendly and unsupportive domestic environment, further adds to the anxiety. Many teachers are not even equipped with the required technical skills to take online classes. Shouldn’t they be given proper training or orientation to tackle the same?

Online classes are a lot to deal with. They are new. One really needs to ‘learn’ how to sit through online classes and these issues are not helping with that. Not implementing any such requirements worsens the already existing digital gap. It makes the situation even more discriminatory.

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