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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Skype should be used in classes

    If professors used Skype in the classroom, students would probably never miss a class.

    Skype, which is used for people to chat “face to face” regardless of where they are in the world, could be used by students in, or should I say out of, the classroom.

    Everyone has those mornings where they just don’t want to get up and go to class. Sometimes students feel lazy, oversleep, have a hangover or are too sick or injured to get to class. Whatever the case, it would be beneficial to students if they were allowed to Skype in on a lecture.

    Advances in technology already allow professors to utilize video chats and conferences to connect students with guests from across the nation and the world. Lectures become more interesting and some outside perspective can enhance the learning of students.

    So why not allow students to use that same technology to attend class? Imagine all those times when it would just be nice to not have to sit for an hour and just stay in bed. Or if you happen to be out of town, but have Internet access, you could still be there in a virtual sense. Students would still hear the lecture, take notes, and even be able to participate by asking questions or contributing their answer or opinion.

    The benefit is that students can still “attend” class when unexpected events come up, such as being sick. There are those students who do wish they could blow off a class sometimes, but even those students could be helped with a little freebie here and there.

    In order to keep some sort of order, there can be restrictions for Skyping in so that students don’t abuse it and practically never show up.

    Professors can limit the amount of times students can Skype in for the entire semester, excluding test days or when a big assignment is due. Or maybe only 10 students a class period can Skype in. That way there’s still a good chance of students attending, and students who are there and have a laptop can “host” absent students.

    To keep the limit at 10, the professor can make sure those students sit at the front of class and let the professor know they are hosting someone. If a student does choose the alternative, maybe they have to provide three questions on the lecture or some sort of brief about the lecture to make up for the physical absence.

    Technological advances in the classroom, like Skype, continue to change the student experience. Allowing students to use Skype as the alternative for attendance could advance the UA beyond the outdated dean’s excuse system.

    — Serena Valdez is a journalism junior. She can be reached at letters@wildcat.arizona.edu or on Twitter via @WildcatOpinions .

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