Pandemic COVID-19 brings a huge impact on world’s activities. Schools, offices, and other public places are being temporarily shut down. People are required to stay in their houses and avoid outdoor activities involving mass gathering.
In addition, it is also impacting school activities to shift teaching learning process through online platforms. As results, students are expected to cope with the challenges of what they should do to stay focused and motivated during this pandemic situation.
1. Jose Fransisco Portes from Florida International University, the United States of America. Alumni of Miami Dade College, the United States of America In responding to this challenging situation, on 8 September 2020, Airlangga Global Engagement (AGE), Universitas Airlangga conducted a webinar entitled “International Student Sharing Session: Study Experience during the Pandemic COVID-19”.This webinar invited six international students as representatives of UNAIR’s global partners and Alumni of UNAIR’s international programs, they were:
1. Jose Fransisco Portes from Florida International University, the United States of America. Alumni of Miami Dade College, the United States of America
2. Wan Hasanah Binti Megat Ajib from Karabuk University, Turkey. Graduated Bachelor degree from Universiti Utara Malaysia
3. Lien Yu from Asia University, Taiwan
4. James Kalimanzila Matemani from Universitas Airlangga, Indonesia, Kemitraan Negara Berkembang (KNB) scholarship awardee
5. Oumaporn Yothakong and Fidyawatee Mama from Prince of Songkla University, Thailand
There were 5 sessions on the webinar and each speaker was given an opportunity to share their experiences on coping challenges of learning from home. This event was conducted via Zoom Meeting and more than 100 attendees participated in this webinar.
As all of the speakers have to study from home through online class, they struggled on the same issue which was poor internet connection. As we know, virtual class requires stable connection in order to ensure a good learning process. However, the snag was students could not control the stability of their network. So, if they could not attend classes because of very bad connection, they would miss the whole lesson and it would be difficult to understand the material the week after.
All speakers also shared that it washard to keep their focus and concentration during online learning. They got several distractions from their environment such as aircraft sounds, neighbours’crowd or even animal sounds that emerged during the class. As a result, speakers found it difficult to catch up with the lecturers. In order to solve this problem, they usually raised some questions to the lecturer by texting them on chatting platforms or writing emails.
Despite all the odds, the speakers also conveyed a benefit of online learning due to the pandemic situation. According to Oumaporn Yothakong and Lien Yu, online learning is more effective because they could access it anywhere. No matter where they are, they are still able to take the courses.