Online learning apparently has a learning curve

This brave new online world? It’s taking some time to adjust to, apparently.

A number of law school students are complaining that it’s not exactly what they signed up for. They wanted to go to law school, which meant having the full experience of going to law school. You know: sitting in a classroom, bantering with classmates, going to a  place callled a library. 

Now many are in cramped apartments or back home with parents, going to school virtually because of the coronavirus outbreak that has forced most of the nation to shutdown.

Yara Rashad, a third-year law student at Notre Dame Law School, told the Indiana Lawyer Magazine that she missed the interaction with classmates and professors and even her chats with servers at her favorite coffee shop.

A third-year Howard University Law School student, Adonne Washington, penned an article for the news website, Technical.lyDc, in which she noted the challenges of online learning.

“Law happens to be quite difficult to learn in general, but then when you move the courses online to a method of learning that the professors and students are equally confused by, you end up with a disconnect.”

Some in legal education, however, were more positive about the transition. Harvard Law School Professor Jeannie Suk Gersen was interviewed by Harvard Law Today and said:

“I find Zoom to be highly compatible with Socratic teaching. It is easy to call on students and have lively exchanges with them, face to face. Several students remarked afterward that their classmates seem less nervous and more prepared while speaking on Zoom than in a large room of 115 students.”

Some of the more interesting comments about online learning came from law school students on Reddit, where they post anonymously.

One student wrote: “I didn't expect it to be so hard, but I haven't gained a thing from the month of lectures. Nothing.”

One has a sense of humor about it: “Honestly though at least you guys can blame it on zoom, I can only blame it on being much dumber than I realized.”

One was positive: “I've been pleasantly surprised at how well the transition to online lectures has worked.”

And finally, one expressed this concern: “The idea that we probably have to do this again next semester has me terrified.”