Is “Hybrid Learning” at Large Universities Worth the Money
Are class zooms worth the $25,000 (or more) cost of attendance at major universities?
Just in time for back to school, students and parents continue to argue about online learning versus in-person instruction. Trying to please both sides, many colleges are opting to have “hybrid” classes where students attend both online classes via Zoom and in-person classes. However, there are still classes that remain fully online amid concerns of the pandemic spreading. With the future unknown and only online classes on the horizon, it is important that the debate is settled- are online classes really worth their hefty price tags?
Last spring, the backlash from college students seemed to settle it- online classes just weren’t the same as being in person. The reasoning behind this argument seemed to vary, but the average student seemed to think that classes were not the same caliber as before. Because of the fast decision that many universities made to have students move home last semester, it is likely that professors were not as prepared to deliver the same lessons in the exact way that they would have in person. Yet, is that really a rip-off?
Any professor could be unprepared for a class- over zoom or in person. With ample time for professors to ready their lessons for learning this summer, it is hopeful that online classes will improve. Likely, problems will arise with class engagement and some students may struggle as they are not suited for online learning. While professors can attempt to fix all of these problems, there is no way that they can make everyone happy. In a perfect world, online classes would be the exact same as in person, but without the student’s help in solving problems, there is no way to get to that finish line.
For some, it may be better to take a gap year or take cheaper classes from local colleges. For those who choose their major university for the instructors and not the experience, hybrid classes could be a perfect solution. Emphasis on could as it takes a joint effort from both parties to achieve the best opportunity for learning. At the end of the day, your tuition costs cover your instruction- no matter if it is online or in person. It is up to us to come up with solutions to perfect hybrid learning over time- not our bills to reflect how much we feel that we are learning. Hopefully, classes will not all move online, but in the event that they do, everyone should be prepared.