https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/vuqeqk/article31917961.ece/alternates/LANDSCAPE_615/Th26-Parley-Puja

Challenges faced by students while switching from online to offline classes

Challenges faced by students while switching from online to offline classes

Understanding the challenges of going back to traditional learning

Socio-emotional support: It is of utmost importance to help students develop their socio-emotional
skills when they are back in college. Colleges should provide counselling and support to all students,
along with sessions in managing emotions and rebuilding their social skills now that they are back in
college after a very long time. Building resilience in students and helping them support each other is
essential to reconnect and maintain a sense of community and camaraderie.

Fear and Anxiety: Another challenge will be to assure parents that the college is safe for their student.
Even though students will be permitted to attend class upon their parents’ authorisation and will be
following strict Covid protocols and guidelines. Maintaining safety at college will also be a challenge.
Adhering to Covid, appropriate behaviour such as washing hands, social distancing and wearing masks at
all times could be a challenge. Ensuring a large number of students in a class to maintain social distance
between them and make them wear masks throughout is nearly impossible unless the classes are
conducted in a huge space such as an auditorium or stadium.

Parent Adjustment: Colleges for higher classes have started and the same has been planned for primary
levels too. The primary challenge is to convince parents to send their Student to college. Colleges have
opened once again as per the government guidelines. Colleges have been instructed…
Adjusting to the environment:  After almost 24 months of colleges at home, students barely remember
what “real” college is like. The task of bringing every student back to college in India is herculean and
requires meticulous planning. Colleges will have new rules in place for social distancing and extra care to
maintain a sanitized environment. Given the large numbers of students we host in schools, it seems like
it will be hard and a tough task to bring in all students on a full-day schedule for all days. College
schedules should be planned accordingly to accommodate multiple needs and also maintain the
required protocols. Also, the situation is still not stable and due to this uncertainty schedule must be
kept flexible and alternate solutions to keep learning continuity should be planned.

Restoring routines: The pandemic has resulted in many students losing a steady routine as they had in
college. This has affected their skills overall, especially in basic reading and writing which has now become more dependent on technology. Relying on recorded lectures and PDF notes and typing out
homework and exams for months, now they have to start taking notes and submitting handwritten
assignments once they are back to college. Students’ sleeping & eating patterns have changed. With
remote learning, students had the freedom to attend classes from the comfort of their homes. Going
back to school means some added effort and change in the laid back schedule they got used to. All these
were not an issue during online learning. The challenge is to get students to come back to college on
time and follow a timetable. Giving students time to re-adjust is the only way to help them through this
period of adjustment.

Conducting classes online and offline: Lastly, colleges face the issue of helping all students reach a
required grade level. In this situation, Institution must make sure that the students who are not coming
to college do not fall behind the rest of the class. Following hybrid class models despite restarting
physical classes is one of the effective means to address this issue. But this also poses a challenge for
teachers since they have to manage two forums simultaneously and College may have to largely invest
in technology and infrastructure to maintain the two platforms.

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