Class Struggles: Online Student Edition

I started my first for-credit college class on January 16th, and I have to say…it’s been a bit of a struggle.  It’s an online class, and though I’m used to doing everything online (I was homeschooled and I’ve been working from home online for years), this is just so different!  I audited an in-person college class last semester, which I thought would give me a feel for college, but I was wrong–at least for this situation.  I realize this is just a learning curve and I will figure it out eventually.

However, I was wondering if you guys could help me out with a question.

Is it typical for an online class to not have lectures?  I took an online workshop a few years ago and we had a weekly lecture to read, yet this class doesn’t have lectures at all.  So far, my instructor just has us read the textbook, and then complete several assignments and quizzes on subjects unrelated to the textbook readings.  Currently, my grades are fine, but I can’t help but wonder how I’m supposed to continue doing well when we aren’t being taught the subject matter before turning in assignments.

For example, we are supposed to write an essay by the end of February.  This week, we need to turn in our essay intros, with instructions to “review the introduction strategies in Module 1.”  However, we were never taught introduction strategies.  I have scoured my course syllabus and modules, but there’s nothing.  Something just doesn’t seem right, and I feel like I’m missing something.  I emailed her about it and she said she will get back to me, so I guess I’ll see.

I’m wondering if this kind of experience is just this particular class, or typical for online classes.

Definitely not accurate for my husband, but it makes me laugh all the same, lol.

Also, peer-to-peer discussions and reviews suck.  This is more of a rant/vent than anything, so feel free to skip over it, lol.  I’ve always been the person that was excluded or criticized by kids in school and social groups, and for some reason, that even continues in college.  I don’t understand why we can’t just be adults.  “Constructive feedback” doesn’t mean to completely tear apart my entry and try to make me feel like my work is worthless.

Even though I’m only taking one class right now, it has been exhausting figuring out how to balance 11+ hour work days, class, keeping up on things around the house (such as cooking/meal planning/budgeting), working out, and taking Kona on her daily walks.  Since starting school, more of my work days have ended close to midnight than not, with a wake-up call at 6:20 the next morning to start it all again.

Again, I know this is a learning curve and I’ll figure out how to balance it.  In the meantime, however, I feel pretty thinly stretched!  “Like butter scraped over too much bread…”  (Sorry, couldn’t resist the nerdy opportunity!)  Thank goodness for my husband being so supportive and helping out however he can when he’s home from work.

Kona and Zelda help me destress, though, so it’s definitely not a bad experience, and I’m so grateful to be able to work and attend college all from the comfort of my own home!  😉  I expected starting class to be a challenge, but I suppose these particular struggles are just different than I anticipated, lol.

Can any of you relate?

Also, random question that I’ve been meaning to ask all of you lovely bloggers: Are you on Snapchat?  If you are, I’d LOVE to connect with you.  I use it more than Instagram and I’d enjoy how “in the moment” it is.  Add me @tiallarising and I’ll add you back (or comment your username and I’ll add you)! ❤ 

Until next time,

-Tialla ❤


8 thoughts on “Class Struggles: Online Student Edition

  1. Most of my classes have required us to read and then do assignments and quizzes based on what we’ve read. The discussions were also a huge thing and a huge chunk of our grade (some participation thing). At times the discussions are fun but they were kind of a drag sometimes lol.
    But, know this, every class and every teacher is different. They each have their own teaching style lol. I do find that refreshing because you find new ways to learn and new activities lol

    • Thank you for the information! I guess that’s what is throwing me–the assignments don’t have anything to do with the readings. The discussions have been off & on so far except that there’s one classmate who is acting like she’s the instructor and condescendingly criticizing everyone…even commenting that people need tutors. It’s crazy and very frustrating. I guess I’ll just have to see how it goes!

      • My first instinct is to say that’s odd, but I just realized that one of my teachers in an online class would have us read several chapters a week, and have discussions about other things and different assignments that weren’t necessarily based on the book. BUT when quizzes and tests came around, whatever it was we read was in those quizzes and test lol. That was for an art class lol.

        • Well that’s good to know! Since this teacher seems so sporadic with giving us instructions to review material she never taught, I was concerned about quizzes containing content we never learned. But this makes me feel better! Thanks!

  2. I’ve never taken an online class so I can’t speak to the lecture thing, but we did peer-to-peer reviewing in college as well and I never liked it. It was never anywhere near as helpful as the professor giving his or her feedback and when I was giving my own feedback to my classmates I struggled with making sure I sounded more constructive than critical. Definitely not a good feeling. I’m sorry that has been a struggle for you right now! You are doing so great, girl! You’ve got this!

    • Aw, thanks Rach–you are so encouraging! The peer-to-peer reviews have been pretty frustrating so far. The first time I gave any suggestions, the classmate came back and completely tore mine apart. Now’s she keeps telling everyone to get tutoring and acting like she’s the instructor, it’s crazy! So now, I just try to tell people what I like about their entries. I completely agree–it’s far more helpful to me for my teacher to give me pointers!

  3. Oh the joys of taking classes online! I took a few classes online for Penn State and they were so vastly different from each other. Some classes, the professor was so organized and would send us pamphlets of the lecture, along with telling us which chapters to read in the textbook and even giving us study guides to fill out if we wanted. Other professors were a lot like the one you mentioned. Kind of sporadic with telling us to read the textbook, but then quizzing us on stuff that we didn’t read. I honestly think it comes down to the quality of the professor and how prepared they are. Some are great in-person teachers, while others do well online. I hope that all made sense, lol.

    I’m glad your husband has been so supportive and that Kona and Zelda have been there to help you destress! Hang in there ❤

    • It’s nice to know that it honestly depends on the instructor! That gives me hope that maybe I’ll have a better experience with other online classes after this. Thanks for sharing your experience! It helps so much to hear from someone else who took a few online classes also! It seems like it’s not such a common experience sometimes, lol.

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s