Alisha McLennan reports many students seem to lack motivation during the Covid-19 lockdown.
And she says some have been told they should get out of their pyjamas more often and get down to study.
Online Study Affects Student Motivation
She says that after a lengthened semester break, teaching from the Wellington universities has continued online.
Alisha, who is at Massey Wellington, has been surveyng student experiences during the lockdown.
She reports communication has been faster than ever, but getting out of bed has been even slower than usual.
Fourth-year student’s advice
Zoe Braithwaite is in her fourth year of Massey, and she has already completed several distance courses.
For struggling students, she suggests “Make sure you are not working in your bed”.
She further advises to ‘keep a schedule, set a space aside wherever you are as your workspace.’
However, Zoe admits that keeping motivated when you first transition to online study is difficult. “That comes honestly with practice,” she says.
To combat Covid-19, universities all over the country removed face-to-face teaching and closed campuses over Level 4 and Level 3.
Lectures have been replaced with zoom meetings, and much communication must take place via email.
Some students struggling
At Massey Wellington, this sudden transition to online learning has caused some students to struggle.
Second-year Massey student Jessica Platen says “I’ve never been one for distance learning, but now obviously because of Covid you need to adapt.
“It’s so easy to just go inside and watch Netflix the whole day, and then realise that I have an assignment due tomorrow and haven’t started it.” Jessica says.
The Facebook Poll
A poll was listed on a Massey class facebook page, students were asked whether online classes were resulting in them feeling motivated or unmotivated.
Out of the 25 who saw the poll, only 11 students responded.
All reported that they were unmotivated.
One respondent, second-year Deeana Isherwood, explained further. “So at this stage I have attended no lectures.” she says.
Deeana usually completes assignments and readings in libraries and cafes, both of which are closed or have restricted access because of the lockdown rules.
“I’ve always struggled with staying motivated and getting work done at home,” Deeana says.
Not only do students have to suddenly navigate the difficulties of online learning, but they must complete courses that were not prepared to be taught online.
Senior Lecturer Dr Catherine Strong says. “Our new courses are not really distance courses or online courses because they weren’t carefully planned as such.
“They are instead referred to as “Emergency Remote Teaching”.
Despite these sudden changes, Jessica Platen says “Massey’s doing the best they can for the situation we find ourselves in.”