Saturday, November 27

Students trapped in Auckland say they are missing it

Auckland university students have mixed feelings about their pent-up learning.

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Students told RNZ that their remote learning is going well, but they are missing practical components of their courses.

Those enrolled in Auckland universities will have distance learning and exams for the remainder of the university year.

Meanwhile, Auckland students who decided to return home for the lockdown are now stuck at alert level 4 as their universities in other parts of the country resume face-to-face classes and tutorials.

Auckland University medical student Daniel Lavin returned to his hometown of Whanganui before the lockdown began.

He is now learning online, which he says is fine, although there are some things that are difficult to do.

“We are trying to do it online, but it is not the same. It is difficult to replicate the hospital environment in Zoom; they do a good job, but it will never be the same again. In terms of real practicalities like taking blood pressure and also taking IVs and stuff, that’s just not going to happen. “

Lavin said that students studying other, more practical subjects were probably worse off.

He said he also had questions about the online exams.

“Having online tests is a bit dramatic, maintaining the integrity of the tests and whether or not people are cheating is quite difficult to do. You cannot guarantee that everyone is playing the same game.”

The university said that most of its online exams would be open-book and would test higher-order thinking rather than recall facts. He said that he would use remote monitoring for some high-stakes exams and that during alert levels 1 or 2 a very small number of exams would be run on campus.

Engineering student Brianna Breeze decided to stay at her Auckland apartment during the closing.

She said she was glad the five-person household decided to host four more to ensure its bubble had a larger mix of people.

“Right before the lockdown we had a few extra people who moved in just for the sake of sanity,” he said.

Breeze said he had no problem with the university’s decision to continue learning online for the remaining two months of the academic year, regardless of whether Auckland’s alert level changes.

“Last year, during the second semester of those exams, they didn’t make the call, they did them in person, and then when that surprise crash happened, it was a bit rushed to go to the online exams in the middle of the exams, like this. I definitely think certainty is preferable. “

The Auckland lockdown was also affecting students from other universities, such as Pauline Abeleda, who four weeks ago left her university hostel in Wellington to be with her family in Auckland and was now trapped there.

“I don’t feel regretful, I just feel stagnant,” she said.

Claire Thomas made the same decision. He said he was happy to have avoided spending three weeks in lockdown at his Wellington shelter.

“I saw it coming a little bit, just from the number of cases Auckland has had compared to anywhere else,” he said.

“Obviously I can’t go back and I’m disappointed about that because I’m really having fun in the hallways and being able to live close to campus is very different than having to do everything online now.”

The University of Victoria resumed face-to-face teaching this week, but luckily for students like Thomas, the lectures would continue to be available online.

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