|A student listens to an online lecture at a cafe, Seoul, March 16, as schools delayed their opening of spring semester due to COVID-19. Korea Times file|
By Bahk Eun-ji
Kim Se-jin, a junior student of Gachon University, said she felt something was missing after logging on to her school's server to listen to lectures last week .
"At first, when I accessed my class through the school's online platform, I couldn't hear the professor's voice due to some technical problem. When I was finally able to hear the lecture, I had already missed the first half," she said.
Kim said she has not had technical problems since then, but she found it somewhat difficult to concentrate on the lectures.
"I know that alternative options are limited, but online classes fall far behind the quality of classroom lectures because of the loss direct communication with professors. Besides I cannot concentrate on the lecture sometimes when I look at my monitor instead of my professor," she said.
More than 70 percent of university students here are complaining about the inconvenience of the online lectures they are taking following their schools' decisions to keep campuses closed until the beginning of next month amid the continued COVID-19 outbreak, a survey showed Tuesday.
Job portals Incruit and Albacall conducted the online survey of 558 university students nationwide for four days from March 16, with 78.9 percent of respondents saying they had difficulties with the online lectures. Among them, 20.2 percent said they were confused over the number of online lecture platforms, and 14.2 percent said it was difficult to access classes due to server problems.
About 25 percent complained about more assignments they had to do for online lectures in order to replace classroom ones, and 19 percent said they couldn't concentrate fully during the lectures. Fourteen percent said the video and sound quality of some online courses was very poor and 13 percent complained that they couldn't ask professors questions and the curriculum used lacked quality.
However, 32 percent said they agreed with the decision to replace face-to-face classes with online ones in order to prevent students from becoming infected with the virus, while another 19.7 percent said online lectures allowed them to save money and time.