Perspectives on Online Midterms Vary Heavily
by Bella Woodhouse, Contributing Writer
The recent events of the COVID-19 pandemic have affected the way midterms are being held.
Students are concerned with online midterms and have a fear of potential academic fraud, and feeling as if there are now disadvantages to those taking them in person.
For students who are taking online classes it can feel as if sometimes you are teaching yourself much of the material, the professor isn’t there helping you in person. This becomes an issue for midterms thanks to a lack of communication between both the material and professor. Sophomore Kennedy Savoy majoring in Biology Pre-medical voiced her concern, “My statistics class is online and sometimes my professor talks too fast and won’t go back and explain things. This makes it harder on exams like midterms when I feel like I’ve taught myself the material.”
Not all professors choose to have a midterm, but for those who did, online challenges may be hard to overcome. Professor Jackson who teaches BIO 110N, Introduction to Avian Ecology feels as if he doesn’t think his midterm being online is a challenge for his students. “I am conducting the midterm online. It is my first time doing it at UMF. Some students do seem to be struggling with things moved online in general; however, most of my students have been completing their online assessments and work just fine. Since they have been taking quizzes and doing other tasks online, I don’t anticipate that the midterm being online would present any additional challenges.”
A few students took their midterm in person but most chose to take the class online. Students taking midterms in person can feel as if they have a disadvantage to the students taking the online version. “I took the midterm in person but there was a problem with the online version. Some of the questions were missing and weren’t the same as ours. This caused confusion and the professor didn’t even realize until 20 minutes left of class,” said Sophomore Sydney Beecher.
The students taking an online midterm also have a higher advantage on getting a better grade with the potential chance of academic fraud. Beecher felt she had an disadvantage for taking it in person because, “the professor couldn’t watch the online students take the test and I fear even though there is a code of honor for online students, I wouldn’t be surprised if some students didn’t follow it.”