Almost three semesters at the University of Connecticut have been virtual, and some university students have expressed similar complaints of classes becoming more challenging due to a lack of routine and social interaction, with a struggle to keep up coursework.
Faith O’Brien, a first semester undecided major, said that classes feel less engaged with the virtual setting than a physical one because she misses out on the social interaction that in-person classes provide.
“I think it’s a lot less engaging online if you just have a lecture with a PowerPoint to look at or just an audio file, you can get distracted super easily,” O’Brien said. “On top of that you can’t meet people, so there’s not a lot of the support system with classes. Like with homework, if you want to talk to your classmates it’s kind of hard to reach out and figure out who’s in your classes.”
Caroline Moore, a first semester undecided major, said that she has been able to manage with classes somewhat. But she expressed that the atmosphere around campus has been boring without student activities.
“Some classes are hard, but I feel like most of them understand,” she said. “And mine are pretty easy to manage for the most part.”
” … On top of that you can’t meet people, so there’s not a lot of the support system with classes. Like with homework, if you want to talk to your classmates it’s kind of hard to reach out and figure out who’s in your classes.”Faith O’Brien, a first semester undecided major
O’Brien said that the asynchronous classes are a bit harder, as it had been difficult having to keep up with classes without a clear schedule.
“After a little while you kind of get into the groove of it,” she said. “But that further suffers from burnout with the amount of effort that you want to put in after a while.”
Magnus Ekstrom, a first semester chemistry major, advised students that are feeling burned out to step away from the computer screen, adding that prioritizing his mental well-being has personally been helpful.
“The way I see it is more balancing it out with more productive things on the weekend,” Ekstrom said. “Spending that much time on the computer all day just can’t be good for your mental health.”
Moore expressed a hope that classes in the fall will be in-person.
O’Brien hoped that next semester UConn will house students at full capacity, giving students a chance to meet new people.
I feel like this semester (Spring 2021) is the worst for burnout. The last two semesters were really a breeze. I think the fact that we don’t have a Spring Break where it is suppose to be has really put a strain on students. Taking a break from it all would be easy if we were not already booked to the max with classwork and class.