Online Lectures During The Pandemic: Collaboration Is Needed To Create An Interactive Online Classroom

Posted by Nur Inayah

March 5, 2021

SEMARANG – Entering the second month of February 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic still seemed difficult to control. The addition of the corona patients had reached nearly 20 million people during January 2021.

As of February 1st, 2021, Indonesia had reported there had been 103,502,373 positive cases. This was not a small number. It made the Department of Communication Science Faculty of Social and Political Sciences Undip carried out the rules of the  Universitas Diponegoro by extending the online lectures in anticipating the spread of the COVID-19.

All of the teaching and learning activities such as the lectures, discussions and other similar activities should be carried out virtually with the synchronous methods, such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams and Kulon 2 Undip. Also the asyncronous, such as the Whatsapp Group, while still paying attention to the continuation of the teaching and learning process and the achievement of the quality of the planned learning.

Pritha R, a student of Master Program in Communication Science, Strategic Communication Concentration batch 12, said that the online learning was the most ideal method to be applied during the COVID-19 pandemic. Even so, sometimes she had to face a number of challenges.

“It was fun to attend the online lectures, because it indirectly brought us closer to our family. It also trained our personal responsibility for the learning process. Most importantly, it could help us prevent the increase number of the COVID-19 patients. Unfortunately, this sudden technology transition had made us, the students and lecturers, quickly adapt to the new system. Sometimes, there was a miss of communication, such as the hassle of turning on two calls in one room. Yet, it can be understood since it is totally different from the face to face or the direct lectures,” she said, Friday (22/01).

Ahmed Shbair, an international student of the Master Program in Communication Science with the concentration of Media, Culture and Society, batch 13 admitted that even though he encountered some problems with the network, this technology was very helpful in continuing the learning and holding the discussion in their respective places. According to him, the learning remained interactive since the system in the Master program of Communication Science, FISIP UNDIP had been systematic. This could be seen from the convenience in providing the teaching materials, and the good online assessment system by the lecturers.

“The large number of the video conferences during the lesson had made the consumption of my internet packages increased. Sometimes, it caused some troubles during the question and answer session. However, when I had a network problem, the lecturer at Mikom Undip  was very open. It was very easy to communicate with them and I didn’t think they made it difficult, “said Ahmed.

Gratitude was expressed by Abdullah, a student of the Master program in Communication Science with the Strategic Communication Concentration, batch 13, who took the courses online for one semester. He was happy since it saved costs.

“As an overseas student, by studying online, I don’t need to rent a boarding house, and for the non-overseas students whose territory is in the same as the campus, there’s no need to pay for the transportation to and off the campus,”

Abdullah was being more grateful, because with the online lectures he could be more flexible and efficient regarding the time. He did not need to spend more time to go back and forth to the campus. Even the lectures were carried out casually.

“There is no need to wear formal clothes, you can study anywhere. Especially by the virtual lectures, the communication with the lecturers had became easier. The campus had been incredibly well prepared in welcoming the online lectures as it had prepared the Microsoft Teams and SIAP. Besides, the lecturers at the Master program of Communication Science are very supportive towards the students. Indeed, at times like this, we as students and lecturers must collaborate with each other, ” he said.