College students in Ohio and around the country are back in the virtual classroom, many of them without clothes. I spoke with the online learning coordinator at an Ohio College about the challenges distance learning poses. Truthfully, I thought the Internet connection would be the biggest problem. I was wrong.
She told me actual technical issues were few and far between. “Honestly, we’re having the most issues with tech etiquette.”
It seems some Ohio students forget their virtual manners online. Even going so far as to shower and get dressed with phone in hand during an online student meeting. A surprising number of people seem to think meetings and classes are clothing-optional. People try to conduct business or class from their bed wearing only their blankets. Some even log on with a friend still under the covers with them.
The Ohio educational professional I spoke with had only one request. “Put a damned shirt on.”
But there are a few other things students need to keep in mind.
Watch The Noise Level
Noises and other distractions in the background are magnified when your microphone picks them up. Be considerate and do the following:
- Mute your microphone when you aren’t talking.
- Don’t blare music or the television in the background.
- If you’re at home, ask others to please keep the noise level down.
- Don’t have conversations with other people during class.
Focus On The Task At Hand
Class is not the time to attend to other business in your life. You wouldn’t get up and walk around in the middle of an in-person class or staff meeting, (at least I hope you wouldn’t) don’t do it virtually.
- No phone calls or texting during class.
- Don’t get up and wander around to attend to household chores. Your movement is distracting to others.
- Make sure others in the household know you’re busy and the area where you’re working is off-limits.
Set Up A Designated Workspace
Going to school on the couch or in bed sounds great but it’s a better idea to set up a designated workspace. A desk in a room where you can shut the door during class is ideal. A small corner of the kitchen will work, too. But everyone else needs to stay out while you’re attending class.
Don’t go to class in your pajamas sitting in bed. Get up and get dressed. If you act like you’re going to class, you’re more likely to treat it like a ‘real’ class.
And, of course, don’t forget about that shirt. The school year will be easier for everyone in Ohio if students remember to mind their virtual manners.