Survey says: Heavier workloads in remote learning

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A search bar with the phrase “one year” over a pattern of red lines and dots shae sackman (manipulated by kate thiessen)

Students are paying full price to be overworked and deprived of resources

Being that we’re a newspaper made up of students from the University of Regina, we thought it’d be interesting to run some polls and see what the general student consensus has been on their experience over the past year. We used our Instagram account of roughly 300 followers as the sample, and here’s what they had to say:

Over the past year, have you found remote learning to be easier or harder than you expected?
I’ve felt okay about it: 23 per cent (~1/4)
It’s been more difficult: 77 per cent (~3/4)

Do you find remote classes have a heavier workload than previously taken in-person classes?
It’s been easier: 10.26 per cent (~1/10)
It’s been the same: 23.08 per cent (~2/10)
It’s been heavier: 66.67 per cent (~7/10)

How do you feel about the university charging full tuition during a pandemic?
It’s fine with me: 10 per cent (1/10)
Don’t get me started: 90 per cent (9/10)

Any general comments?
-The gym fee! So stupid!!
-Online learning seems more about handing in assignments than actually learning.
-The university is using us with the tuition pricing because we won’t make a fuss. I want to make a fuss because I was unemployed for a good chunk of last year…The university is being exploitive, and they know it.

What’s one thing you wish you could anonymously say to your professors about learning this past year?
-For god sake, be compassionate.
-It’s hard to look at a screen for 12 hours a day, I’d appreciate an opportunity to use paper.
-Please stop relying so heavily on readings – you give us 50 pages a week, but so does every other class.
-If you wouldn’t make us do in-class reflections, why are you making us do forums?
-Online classes are hard to keep track of because they don’t feel real.
-Some of y’all gotta stop blaming students for your lazy teaching techniques.
-Stooooop with the weekly forum posts!! It’s not a replacement for in class discussion.
-Expecting us to remain at the same productivity level (or more) during a time like this, surrounded by all of life’s distractions (both personally, at home, and in the world) is unrealistic and ignorant
-To be gentle and kind. We are all doing our best.

Did you have a professor this year that went above and beyond? Give them a shoutout!
-Dr. Khairalla and Dr. Maria Davis!!
-Rob Piercey and Kyley Ewing from the Philosophy department!
-Caroline Graves
-Bill Bonner
-My History prof Hoffman really saved my ass
-Medrie Purdham! She goes above and beyond. Love love love her.

So, what did we learn from this? Slightly more than three out of every four respondents reported that their courses have been more difficult, and slightly less than seven out of every ten respondents (or two thirds) said they also have a heavier workload in remote learning than they did during prior in-person courses. I’m speaking specifically to the profs now: please take this into consideration when putting together your courses for the spring/summer and fall 2021 semesters. The majority of your students are grossly over-worked and lack adequate resources. Nine out of every ten have a problem with the fact that they’ve been charged full tuition for the experience they’ve had. Getting paid to be overworked is one level of stress, but students have had to pay to be treated this way and to undergo this experience. Buyer’s remorse doesn’t begin to cover the emotions we’re experiencing.

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