Most of you reading these posts are probably going to be full-time students at DU. Just in case, however, you are planning to enroll for standalone courses, maybe for one of the many languages taught here, then this post will tell you a bit more about the classes!
Some courses at the university are entirely distance based and my Japanese course is one such example. Now let me confess, I’ve never been part of an online class before and so to me, the initial hesitation as to how effective an online class can be, was justified.
However, it is now my second semester of learning Japanese here and I must say, the Connect Portal (where all the online courses of DU can be accessed) has far exceeded my expectations. Classrooms are quick to access and it is fairly easy to navigate as well. All you need is a webcam, microphone and a good, working internet connection!
What I like most about the Connect portal though, is that it can be used by students as a virtual meeting room as well. Classes are usually held by the teachers in ‘meeting rooms’ while students are free to use ‘student rooms’ for themselves. Each week, I meet my classmates online for a round of Group Work for the Japanese class and well, it is as seamless as though we were sitting with each other, instead of across the globe! Group Work on the Connect portal is made easy since you have the option of sharing documents and taking notes.
I have had classmates from Finland, Spain, Germany, Tokyo, USA – and yes, although meeting everyone in person would be a great experience, for now I am quite happy that I get to see them and learn with them each week. The best part? It’s all from the comfort of my own home!
So while I probably wouldn’t choose online learning as my first preference, I’m just glad that DU has offered a really well-integrated platform for when you don’t have a choice but to learn online.