Online school has more negative impacts than positive

 Students are participating in online learning all throughout the world due to COVID-19.     Photo Credit - Unsplash

Students are participating in online learning all throughout the world due to COVID-19. Photo Credit – Unsplash

Katherine Northenor

Online school has been implemented all throughout the world for students to obtain their education amidst the breakout of COVID-19. The pandemic shut down schools around the beginning of March earlier this year, and over 1.2 billion students world-wide are not physically attending school. Most public schools are still using online learning to avoid students coming in-person to school, but some, along with several private schools have gone back. Like anything, online school has its pros and cons, but the problem is that the negatives of electronic learning outweigh the positives

 

At-home learning has many benefits that are crucial to the health of students and family members. Online allows students to be engaged in school while not having to physically attend it, keeps students safe from coming in contact with COVID-19, and is cost effective. Students are able to participate in their regular classes through online school by using a variety of different methods such as Microsoft Teams, Google Classroom, Zoom, etc. This version of learning allows students to participate in school through synchronous and asynchronous lessons that teachers give through the school’s preferred method of communication. Additionally, by using online learning students are socially distanced from others that could expose them to the coronavirus, so it has many health benefits for students and their loved ones. Lastly, e-learning is cost effective for schools because they don’t have to spend as much on training or supplies. “Due to simplified logistics and lowered travel costs, among other factors, learning institutions who utilize e-Learning can expect to save 50% to 70% on overall training costs,” says Sander Tamm from e-student.org. Through these several benefits to online learning, the method sounds extremely positive in its impacts and seems like the obvious choice for schools, but there are also countless negative impacts as well.

 

Negative impacts of online learning are seen in the technicality of the actual use of it. These impacts include how technology is not always efficient, it is harder for students to grasp concepts being taught, online learning can cause social isolation, and can cause students to not develop needed communication skills. Online school’s negative implications can easily be fixed through students coming physically to school. 

 

Technology is not always efficient and can cause major disruptions to classes. Online learning requires students to have high speed internet at their home, which can cause complications if it is not available. A student’s wifi could shut down unexpectedly and not allow them to turn in an assignment on time, or it might not allow them to attend class and miss instruction. This causes major negative impacts to the student’s education and grades. Furthermore, students have trouble grasping concepts that are taught through online school because they have more distractions that take their focus away from their education. Students can become distracted a lot easier when not in a school environment in front of other students and teachers, which causes them to not be able to grasp concepts being taught as well as if they were in-person. 

 

Due to the lack of social interaction, online school can cause students and faculty to experience social isolation. “The e-learning methods currently practiced in education tend to make participating students undergo contemplation, remoteness and a lack of interaction,” states Sander Tamm from e-student.org. Lack of human communication experienced in online school can cause increases in stress and anxiety. Additionally, online learning can cause necessary communicational skills to not be developed by students. Neil Kokemuller from Seattlepi explains this when saying how it “takes away from some of the social and team-building that occurs informally in college classrooms.” Shown by these impacts, not being able to interact with other students and teachers during online school can lead to serious negative effects

 

In conclusion, I feel that the negative impacts of online school outweigh the positives. Although online learning is helpful in keeping our community safe (e.g. during COVID-19), the difficulties that arise are much more prominent than the positives. The many negatives presented in e-learning outrank the beneficial impacts, therefore it should only be used during a situation where in-person learning is neither viable nor available.