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Readers Respond: What's the Worst Online Class You've Ever Taken?

Responses: 5


Faulty technology or an unprepared professor can make an online class a miserable experience. Almost every online student has had to deal with at least one "bad apple" class. Commiserate with your peers by telling us about the worst online class you've taken.

Off-Topic Curriculum

I took a course to earn a degree in accounting. I went through two years of classes in about 18 months...but never got a single class that had anything to do with accounting until my last two terms. I had to take 15th century literature, art history, and a number of other (interesting, but totally off the point) classes and came away with a degree, but not enough accounting knowledge to apply for a job. What a waste of time and money!

Unqualified Online Teacher

I was going to sign up for an online Spanish course. However, as serendipity would have it, I just happened to meet three disgruntled former students who had all quit this course for various reasons. Firstly, they found out that the teacher had NO experience, background, certification or anything to do with Spanish. The teacher showed her lack of judgement when she bumped these students up to the next level without telling them beforehand or explaining why they couldn't complete the level they were happily working on. These students also said they were unhappy with the (lack of)feedback on their written work. The teacher probably didn't understand half of what they had written! And finally, the teacher wasn't willing to review the quality of her teaching with these students. In my school district, this is a breach of the Code of Conduct. And yet, this teacher is still earning a full teacher's salary. I wonder how the tax payers would feel if they were aware of this...
—Guest Kathy

Unprepared Tutors

The trouble with online classes is no one is monitoring them or regulating. So you have many "tutors" showing up online claiming to have the skills and background to host such a class. Here's a typical example: A student decides they can earn a few bucks teaching English online, sets themselves up with a cheap camera and dial up Internet connection. They have no formal training or curriculum to follow. The result is a bad user experience and a black eye for online teaching. I own an online Spanish school and have qualified teachers,high quality connections/cameras/computers and curriculum.This provides the client a quality class, so they will return for more.

Oh, Forget About the Syllabus

During my worst online class, the teacher gave us a completely knew syllabus with different assignments four weeks into the session. I was furious because I'd already been working on a couple of the assignments and it was too late to drop the class.
—Guest Sarah

The Absent Professor

I once took a class where no one knew who the professor was. For the first half, it was alright because I could just turn in the assignments by email. But, I had some big questions during the final weeks and I couldn't get a hold of anyone that was supposed to be "in charge" of the class.
—Guest Bob A.

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