Zoom meetings have become the new norm for many college students throughout the nation. However, this new way of learning can become very distracting for the students and professors. There are many potential distractions at home for students to succumb to in the middle of lectures.
Some distractions might include the TV being on, the phone pinging with notifications, and pets and children who are seeking attention. It is difficult for everyone to not be on a college campus, inside a classroom where there are minimal distractions, and to know that there are consequences to be faced for those who conduct disruptive behavior for trying to distract others.
While Zoom meetings are non-optional throughout the country, what are students doing and what actions are they taking to prevent distraction-free learning?
CSUSB student Layla Lopez is taking measures to ensure a distraction-free environment at home.
“I am trying to make my room comfortable but free of distractions,” says Lopez. “Luckily enough I have a family that is also busy and courteous enough to understand that I am still ‘in class’ during my zoom session.”
Keren Cheatwood is taking action at home as well. She says, “I am doing my homework in my room without the TV on and my phone is away. I also put on instrumental music while doing my homework to keep me in the zone.”
In addition to making home a distraction-free environment, many students have to adapt to this new way of learning.
“I find online learning more difficult because I am a hands-on learner and prefer to be at school where I am more focused,” Lopez comments. “I am still thankful I get to have some interaction with my peers through the sessions, but having in class discussions are obviously more difficult online than in person.”
Online learning proves to be difficult for many students such as Cheatwood. “Online learning is more difficult for me because I am used to hands on learning. I do better in a classroom setting where I can ask questions and hear other students’ thoughts and opinions as well,” says Cheatwood.
Some students prefer the online classes because of the flexibility it offers. “I actually like zoom a lot more than an in class setting, I can easily put my airpods in and listen in on the lecture while doing other things. It gives me the luxury to lay down and relax or even eat a meal. I also don’t have to worry about what clothes I’m going to wear and it is way easier to wake up for lecture because it doesn’t take long to turn on my laptop and hop on zoom coming right out of bed,” student Jon Ramos says.
Although there are some distractions that can be avoided, not all of them can be anticipated. Jon Ramos had some distractions during the first week of school that no one could have predicted.
“My lecture was raided during the first week. There were a couple of guys who weren’t part of the class who were being a big distraction and had a high desire of being class clowns. They were initially kicked out but came back towards the end of lecture,” said Ramos.
Because the sudden transition from on campus and in person to entirely online is the new and current norm, it is necessary to promote, as best as we can, healthy and safe-learning experiences for everyone during this pandemic. Hopefully, all students, staff, and faculty will be back on campus soon, as one united pack.