The Student News Site of Bethel University

The Clarion

The Student News Site of Bethel University

The Clarion

The Student News Site of Bethel University

The Clarion

Wondering how online classes will work? Here’s what professors have to say.


Clarion staff members reached out to professors to gauge how different departments will operate amidst the recent announcement of a two-week online education period. 

By Zach Walker

Leigh Anne Adams – Theatre

Adams mentioned that Broadway shows will most likely be streamed online for Intro to Creative Arts classes, but the department has not yet figured out how to transition to online lectures.

Rollin King – Chemistry

On Thursday, King said the department had not received any communication about the possibility of online classes and did not have a contingency plan. “Of course, we can’t replicate the lab experience,” King said. “We could send out data and have the students analyze it, but it’s not the same.”

Jeff Port – Biology

Port noted that “most of [the biology] faculty already use Moodle” and “a number also have flipped classrooms with a fair amount of online material already available for students.” But lab experiences “represent the most significant challenge,” Port said.

“If students cannot be on campus for face to face classes, some of these projects may need to be modified or perhaps concluded early,” Port said. “We’ll do our best to ensure the online components are equivalent to a face to face experience but there will be unavoidable changes as we make the transition.”

Jeff Wetzig – Art

For his specific classes, drawing and printmaking, Wetzig plans to ask students to take supplies home, take pictures and post online feedback to others’ work. “Expectations will have to change because we won’t get as far outside class,” Wetzig said. “The focus will have to shift to essential assignments.”

Rebecca Seaberg – Math and Computer Science

Seaberg speculates that she will upload PowerPoint presentations with voice recordings to Moodle and ask students to read textbooks, complete example problems and take notes. She predicts a lighter workload for students due to restricted access to on-campus resources, and the department as a whole will postpone testing.

Ripley Smith – Communication and Media Production

Smith was unsure about specifics of the online migration and said that it will look different for each course. “For some, it will work fine in the short term,” Smith said. “For others, for instance with a service learning component, it will be more difficult to duplication the learning that would have taken place in that service setting.”

He mentioned that, for media production students, the shift “will depend on what phase they are in for a given project and the access they need for equipment and editing.”

Steve Bennett – Education

Through conversations with other educators, Bennett has come up with several resources that can be used for online education. “They’re not going to be as good, but at least… it will make some progress with some of these skills we want the students to have,” Bennett said.

Student teachers have been advised to follow the instruction of their respective schools. “If [their] school is open but going online then our students are to be with their cooperating teachers helping with the online component,” Bennett said.

Chris Moore – Political Science

“We’ll use a variety of teaching modalities, including audio, audiovisual, and cooperative textual tools to deliver content,” Moore said. “Obviously, we’ll miss face to face student contact.”

Moore mentioned that students should expect an increased workload during the period of online instruction. “This isn’t a vacation,” Moore said. “Students will need to commit to being more self-disciplined and self-directed to be as successful for the remainder of this term.”

Additional reporting by Makenna Cook, Macie Gavic, Emma Gottschalk, Ally O’Neil, Laura Osterlund and Josh Towner.


Leave a Comment
Donate to The Clarion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Bethel University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Clarion

Comments (0)

All The Clarion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *