KFA Writes

KFA Online Virtual Class – Synopsis

2020-04-15

 

A. General Brief:

The COVID-19 Pandemic took the world with surprise and disrupted the usual routines of everyone. The lockdown started since March 24 and is continued till April 15 or even further to battle the COVID 19 Virus.

Institutions like us are changing its throttle to Online Education to cope up with the change. We started our Online Learning by introducing “Online Virtual Class” since March 31 and the platform we are using is Skype at this moment, due to its user friendly nature and familiar to all. We explored few other platforms but the most favorable happened to be Skype and our IT Team is still exploring which platform would be the most exceptional one, as what matters the most for us is the excellent academic delivery to our Students and the easiness for our Faculty members to conduct these sessions.

B. Prior Preparation for Online Learning Class:

A well-prepared plan was executed 1 week prior to our online learning class commencement. The actions undertaken were:

  1. Create Skype Groups-According to class/semester and Elective Groups.
  2. Share the links to students and faculties.
  3. Inform each individual student via Viber, emails and phone.
  4. Demonstration session to faculties regarding technicalities.
  5. Demonstration to students regarding “Dos and Don’ts” of Online Learning Class.
  6. Demo class was conducted so as to overcome any technical difficulties.
  7. Develop Attendance Policy and Methodology

C. Online Vs In-Class – Pros

    1. The Arrangements

The first difference lies in the arrangement and management of class. In-Class routines demand more of logistic works compared to online class. Online classes are more relaxed and require less attention to manage.

    2. Scheduling

Online classes are easy to schedule, particularly in this outbreak situation where everyone is home. We have specially considered the work schedule of students so that the classes do not clash with their work from home period.

    3.Hassle Free

Since no one has to commute or walk in physically, the classes always start on time. I experienced that almost everyone (Faculty & Students) are on time to attend.

D. Online Vs In-Class -Cons                  

    1. No human touch/Limited Interaction

You learn better when you see things physically. A good learning is obtained when you see and feel the gestures, postures, mannerism, tone, volume and so on of your teacher. In online learning class, we miss out on these essentials. Also, the conversation is limited till you touch the “end call” button. Though faculties entertain interaction after the class, students are deprived from social discussions.

    2. Not all Subject are practical to conduct through Online Class

The online learning technology limits us on conducting classes that demand hands on training, writing and explaining on white board. Subjects such as Business Accounting and Finance, Financial Management, Business Research Methodology are not covered during online classes.

    3. Cluttered Messages

Students are on their own when it comes to complete a deadline. The messages are thrown from every end of students, faculties and academic department. Any major deadlines could be slipped out of sight for students. Hence the responsibilities to complete the assigned tasks are subject to person. A mobile app for reminders would be way to go.

E. Number of hours of sessions being conducted

Classes are conducted on two shifts: Morning and Evening. Considering the work schedule of students, morning shifts class run from 10am to 1pm and evening shift classes are from 5pm to 6pm. The classes run from Tuesday to Sunday every week. More than 48 hours of classes have been conducted till date.

F. Number of Faculties being engaged

Dual Faculty System has been running in our institution since day one. And it has not been compromised in online platform either. Every session is facilitated by both Academic Professor and Professional Contributor in Dual Faculty System teaching methodology.

G. Guest Speakers & Other Online Learning

Aside from regular online classes, students and other viewers benefit from guest speakers and weekly economic sessions on skype and facebook respectively. Last week session on “Operational and Non-Operational Departments of Hotels” was highly appreciated by BHM students. Similarly, we also did an insightful session by Mr. Parmeshwor Pant-CEO, Himalayan Capital on “COVID-19 and its effect on Nepalese and Global Economy”. This live session on facebook received focused viewers and comments much more than expected.

H. Overall Impression

The outreach of Online Learning has been overwhelming so far and our Team’s efforts to optimize the delivery have been a major focus. We have allocated academic team members along with a representation from our IT department to support in each and every online session. There is a daily reporting system by the Academic Team, informing about the overall conduct at the end of each day.

Yes we do face challenges in conducting our sessions, and that is where we keep trying to mitigate these challenges. We brainstorm, discuss, plan and seek expert’s advices to reach towards our desired results. Ultimately what matters more for us is the Student’s Satisfaction Learning.

Students and Faculties have appreciated and valued our initiative. No doubt these sudden moments has certainly affected all of us and our daily lifestyle has changed dramatically, where Social distancing is important but at the same time pushing ourselves to normality is equally imperative!

The right engagement is the key to getting over this situation and we are geared up to conduct online virtual class throughout this lockdown period and make our Student’s day productive.

 

- Rajat Bajracharya

The Author is Academic Coordinator of KFA Business School & IT.

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