The transition to in-person classes: A sophomore’s perspective

As first timers on-campus, some second-year students may struggle to leave behind virtual class conditions.

Many sophomores are on campus for the first time this year. Photo by Connor Mahon

Grace Wasson, a biology major, lived off-campus as a freshman during the entire 2020-2021 school year because of coronavirus protocols drawn up by Cleveland State University’s administration.

Besides the experience of living on campus for the first time, Wasson is one of many sophomore students at CSU finding some difficulty in adjusting to in-person classes after a year of smoother sailing.

Wasson’s schedule was much more flexible while she learned from home. She could manage her time with minimal stress, and she could even watch recorded lectures if she could not be present for class.

With the convenience afforded by Zoom classes, Wasson knew it was going to be hard to readjust once she arrived back on campus for full in-person classes.

“With a year of waking up two minutes before my Zoom class, the need to wake up early for a commute, no matter how small, has been an adjustment,” Wasson said. “Five weeks in and I still miss that small luxury.”

With the 2021-2022 school year gaining ground, student resources have shifted back to in-person. Tutoring departments and other academic support services are among these.

Wasson noted that a full year of online courses may have caused some amount of discourse in the general learning curve for the class of 2024.

“Studying for an online test was completely different than studying for an in-person test,” Wasson said. “Anticipated open-note tests changed the formats of tests at large. Since that is what I knew my first year, trying to study for in-person tests has been much more difficult.”

As for this year, a ripple in the learning process has definitely shown itself within the classroom, as Wasson explained.

“Now, it’s harder to catch everything and even harder to ask questions,” Wasson continued. “Many professors don’t want to be in close contact with students, which can be frustrating when trying to ask a question.”

Wasson offered some words of advice for sophomore students.

“I would tell them to try and find a balance that works for them,” Wasson said. “Whether that be devoting the time between classes to homework or having an intentional day of rest over the weekend, doing things other than school is so important.”

Even with most of the odds against younger students, such as Wasson, there are indefinite adjustments that can be made in attacking self-education properly. With that being said, one can only hope for positive times ahead for the class of 2024.

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