August 10, 2020
Online student behavior a focus for teachers, parents this fall
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Teachers and parents caught off guard earlier this year by the explosion of online learning in the face of COVID-19 must be ready to work together to support students for the fall semester.
So says Purdue University education leader Nancy Marchand-Martella, who has studied support systems for students and at-risk learners.
“Teachers need to ensure they have a social presence,” she said. “Going online in some capacity needs to include reaching out and touching base with students and constantly checking in to immediately answer emailed questions.”
Even at the university level, the best online classes are those that have a high degree of social presence where the student interacts with the professor and even other students.
“At any level, social interaction helps students feel like they are a part of the class and someone cares about them,” said Marchand-Martella, the Suzi and Dale Gallagher Dean of Purdue’s College of Education.
Online learning remains a large part of school for students across the country as a result of the pandemic. Some schools are opting for virtual education only through the fall semester. Others are doing a hybrid model, mixing virtual and in-person classes. Still others are solely in-person.
Marchand-Martella said it will be even more important to have one or more parents or guardians in the home reinforcing what is being taught in a virtual environment. Someone should check the homework and provide corrective feedback to the student.
“This school year will be one of those where it does takes a village,” she said. “You need the teacher, but you need the parents or even an older sibling helping their younger brothers and sisters with some of the online lessons and homework if help is needed.”
About Purdue University
Purdue University is a top public research institution developing practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked the No. 6 Most Innovative University in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, Purdue delivers world-changing research and out-of-this-world discovery. Committed to hands-on and online, real-world learning, Purdue offers a transformative education to all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, enabling more students than ever to graduate debt-free. See how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at purdue.edu.
Writer, Media contact: Brian Huchel, firstname.lastname@example.org. Working remotely but will provide immediate response.
Source: Nancy Marchand-Martella, email@example.com. In addition to phone interviews, the dean is available for interviews via Microsoft Teams, Zoom, or Webex.
Journalists visiting campus: Journalists should follow Protect Purdue protocols and the following guidelines:
- Campus is open, but the number of people in spaces may be limited. We will be as accommodating as possible, but you may be asked to step out or report from another location.
- To enable access, particularly to campus buildings, we recommend you contact the Purdue News Service media contact listed on the release to let them know the nature of the visit and where you will be visiting. A News Service representative can facilitate safe access and may escort you on campus.
- Wear face masks inside any campus building. Wear face masks outdoors when social distancing of at least six feet is not possible.