Ama Asantewa Ansah’s thoughts …. COVID-19 and the challenges with online studies

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Covid-19 is currently the reigning champion of our time. It has taken a toll on every sector of every nation. From trade to finance to agriculture and so on. The educational sector has been no exception to the wrath of this pandemic. Schools and many other institutions have been closed down to control the spread of the Covid-19 virus.

Tertiary institutions have had to use online studies as alternative to lecture hall tuitions since that is the only choice they have and studies must go on amidst the storm. It appears to be the most convenient means of teaching and learning at the moment. However, it seems students are facing quite a lot of challenges. There are a lot of distractions outside the classroom, thus, online classes are mostly heavily interrupted when one is home or elsewhere. Distraction by parents, siblings, phone notifications and so on. A student may even be multitasking as class is ongoing, giving him or her divided attention.

Students also have to face the challenge of unstable connections by the network service providers which interrupts online studies. It is even worse when studies are on live apps like zoom and google classroom. One may miss a lot when there is buffering and sound problems. As if all these network issues are not enough, the use of data has become expensive as well. Data now runs out very fast and students have no choice than to

purchase more for teaching and learning sake. This is very inconvenient especially in these abnormal times where money has become a huge problem and the economy is quite shaky.

As exams for tertiary institutions are approaching, the Covid-19 pandemic has forced many of these institutions to put measures in place for online examinations which many students are not happy about. Per my experience as a students of the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ), I realized there are quite a number of complications that come with it and many others will agree with me on that. Many are still having difficulties going through just the pre-exam processes; how much more the examination itself?

Is it that the measures put in place are too cumbersome for students or students are just finding it difficult to adapt to this new method? Whatever be the case, the world just needs Covid-19 dead so things can just go back to normal.

The writer is a student of the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ)

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