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Testing the reliability of Purdue online education

Monday, May 18, 2020

My name is Josh Appleton and this my first blog post. I’d like to take on an informal tone with these posts because there’s a chance not everyone will have the attention span to sit down and read an essay. I get it, I wouldn’t want to either. I just want to share my perspective with you and not bore you in the process. Either way, welcome aboard!

So, let’s talk about online classes… I feel like every student has a different opinion about taking classes online. Historically, we have been able to choose whether or not we wanted to physically attend classes, or do so virtually from a location we see fit. Recently however, certain circumstances have shifted all education into the online format. It is very easy to find yourself upset with the current educational situation, however I have found it to be a rather pleasant experience. Here’s why:

Routine, Routine, Routine! Moving to the online class format has called for an alteration in my daily schedule. Now that I am at home, I am far more prone to distractions while studying. Because of this, I have had to create a “balanced” schedule. As of now, I usually go to bed around 4:00 in the morning, wake up at 1:00 in the afternoon and do homework from about 2:00 to 10:00. I then spend the next six hours of the night catching up on my favorite shows, playing video games, and making beats. Rinse and repeat. Balancing my schedule in this manner has allowed for me to be incredibly productive during the day, and still enjoy my time to myself during the night.

Josh taking some down time on his computer

Purdue’s online educational system is very well structured. I am currently a freshman who just finished my third, yes third, semester at West Lafayette. Of the fifteen courses I have taken at Purdue, two of them have been entirely online. Taking these courses online while still attending in-person classes was not a challenge. The faculty do a fantastic job of making sure their students have access to the same resources they would have if they attending classes in-person. Currently, without having physical access to campus resources, I still find that I am able to get whatever help necessary. Many professors have been hosting virtual office hours via zoom, as well as utilizing other resources like the Piazza platform to allow students to have their questions answered by professors, as well as teaching assistants. Resources such as Piazza were available before the transition to online learning, however, now many students are discovering the true power of the online resource base Purdue has to offer.

In addition to the resources provided, Purdue’s courses are structured around technology. The University frequents the use of sites such as McGraw Hill Connect and Pearson MyLab. Coming from a high school that heavily used pencil and paper, I’ve found the transition to be quite an interesting one. Across my summer, fall, and spring semesters, the majority of the pencil and paper work I have been doing was taking notes. However, this was only when using my laptop or a tablet to take notes was not feasible. Most of the time when I am taking notes, I frequent the use of Microsoft OneNote, as it is very organized and well designed. Otherwise I work directly in the McGraw Hill and Pearson sites. Overall, I have found that most of my instructors, if not all, have been welcoming to the idea of using technology in the classroom. Doing so has allowed me to be far more organized with my work.

“Alright Josh, but why do I care?” That’s up to you. Whether you’re a current student or prospective one, realize that technology is well-implemented into Purdue’s educational infrastructure, and the system is set up for you to succeed. As of May 2020, during the COVID-19 outbreak, I have truly been presented with an opportunity to test the reliability of Purdue’s online educational system, and by all means it has passed.

Josh Appleton

Joshua is studying Supply Chain Information & Analytics. He is involved in the Society of Minority Managers, the Business Opportunity Program and the Honors College.

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