For those of you who will or are taking Benno Weiner’s class at Appalachian State University, this study guide will help immensely for the final. Good luck and make sure you start studying a few days in advance. -Jordan
It is fair to say that both schooling systems have their pros and cons, but as far as student capacity and the economy goes, I say that traditional schooling is the way to go. First of all, students who have actual teachers are much more likely to be held accountable for finishing their work and doing a good job of it. Though online schooling may be easier because of this, that does not always mean the student may be learning to their fullest capacity. Rather than having multiple choice tests and generated scores, real instructors know the student’s personality and goals for themselves. With this knowledge of knowing the student’s personality comes the leniency in subjects that may not be the student’s best subject. Every students brain is different and may be geared towards different subjects. For example, while some may be great with math and horrible with English, others may be terrible with math and wonderful with English. With computer generated scores, everything is graded the same without any consideration for the student’s actual effort. With online classes, one cannot speak with the teacher about the grades received and ask for extra credit to improve it, there is simply a final grade that one has to deal with no matter the reason. Yes, one can take the class again, but ultimately that is a waste of time. In reference to testing, many online students will memorize the information that they need to know for the tests and forget the information after the exam. This is done in traditional schooling as well, but the difference is how the information is taught in the first place. The expression, “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, but teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime” is definitely true in this situation. Teachers want students to retain information because it will serve them better in the long run. The best way for students to learn is not just having the information given to them, but for the students to have hands-on experiences that teach the skill or idea that they are supposed to remember. Many teachers use this practice through labs, activities, games, songs, and other approaches. Hands-on activities can be simulated through online classes, but realistically they seldom are. Another advantage that traditional schooling has over online schooling is the human interaction. Throughout the school year, students will meet and befriend other students in their classes, which builds both self-confidence and social skills. Also, students being able to collaborate with one another may help the information stick and studying to become easier and more common. Though online students may know other online students who are taking the same class, it would be very rare for these students to interact with each other on a daily basis. It may be argued that online classes prevent bullying, but this is not so. Bullying among young students is going to happen no matter what, it will just happen in a different place. Also, students who are bullied and choose online classes to escape this may have lower self-esteem because they are hiding from their fear rather than confronting it, and by being isolated, may be without the support system of other students who have also been bullied. My last argument against online schooling is concerning the economy. Many teachers are already struggling to find jobs, and those that have them are getting paid very little. If online schooling became a prominent system, millions of men and women would be without jobs, which would put the United States economy in ruins. Some may argue that schools are overpopulated with students and teachers are overwhelmed, but I think that the solution to this problem is build more schools. Yes, it is expensive, but as far as long-term effects go, building more schools and hiring more teachers is a very good investment. For example, in the 1930s, F.D. Roosevelt authorized the idea to build the Blue Ridge Parkway, a scenic highway through the Appalachian Mountains. Though this may have seemed like a waste of money at the time, but overall its construction employed hundreds of men and now brings in a large revenue from tourism. Building more traditional schools to replace the need of inline schools will ultimately help the economy and better educate the youth of America.