CSUSB’s transition to the semester system in the midst of a pandemic has brought upon mixed feelings. As the fall semester comes to an end, a professor and a few students share how they endured the transitions.
Brandon Johns, a full-time lecturer in the Department of Philosophy, sees semesters as something he will have to get used to. Johns says, “I like quarters because I like the quicker pace of a 10-week term.”
Because of the added five weeks, Professor Johns has found himself having to assign more homework, causing him to be swamped with grading. Along with the added weeks, the transition to online has been a challenge for him to keep students engaged and interested in the course material. However, the semester system is allowing him the time/flexibility to offer courses asynchronously because he understands that students have families, work, and the possibility of having to care for relatives.
Students also had the opportunity to reflect back on the transition to semester and the challenges it brought.
Steven Herschler, a junior mathematics major, says, “I never had a chance to try quarters because this is my first semester at CSUSB. I transferred from Crafton Hills College, but I think I would have still preferred the semester system. I like being in a class for enough time to build relationships with teachers and my peers, and the quarter system seems like it chops all that away.”
This semester, in particular, Herschler found himself having to self-teach because lectures had changed dramatically. However, once he adjusted to the workload, he figured out how to work effectively and efficiently.
“I will be able to apply this whether I am online learning or not from here on out,” Herschler said.
Kelia Paragas, a junior kinesiology major, found herself becoming more independent and really focused on time management. The biggest challenge she faced with the semester transition was making sure her previous courses and progress weren’t affected by the change.
As for semester system preferences, Paragas says, “Personally I would prefer quarters as we get classes done quicker and I like the fast paced style more.”
For more information on the semester conversion, visit the Q2S website.