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Hybrid courses beat out online courses and lectures | The Triangle

Hybrid courses beat out online courses and lectures

Photograph courtesy of Tungsten at Wikimedia Commons.

Hybrid courses are the best type of course to enroll in because they contain some of the best aspects from both online classes and lectures.

Probably one of the most beneficial aspects of hybrid courses is the fact that the vast majority of the assignments are done online. This is extremely good because it gives the students a lot of flexibility when it comes to getting work done. Even though there are still due dates for assignments, it’s a lot easier to meet these dates when you don’t have to attend the class three times a week.

It may seem like a small commitment to attend class for 50 minutes three times a week, but the total time spent at the end of the day can vary dramatically depending on the distance of your commute. If you live in The Summit and have a class in Lincoln Plaza, it’s probably going to take you 10 or 20 minutes to get to class and then another 10 or 20 minutes to get back home. And that’s assuming you don’t make any stops on the way there or back.

Another aspect of hybrid courses that is better than lectures and online classes is that you get a better connection with your fellow students. In online classes, you probably never see your classmates in person, and in lectures you see your classmates three times a week for 50 minutes, which gives you little to no time to talk with people. In a hybrid course, there are almost always discussion boards. Sometimes, these discussion boards are boring or uninteresting, but in certain classes, they are easily the best part.

Not only are these discussion boards a great source for getting information from your peers by reading, but they can be really entertaining for all parties involved if the professor leaves the discussion topic up to the students. It’s just like those classes where the professor makes you sit in a circle and discuss the week’s reading. The only real difference is that discussion threads don’t limit you to class time. Most lectures don’t even have time dedicated to discussion, and the ones that do generally allot only a quarter or half of the whole class time for it.

Something else about hybrid courses that I prefer over lecture and online classes is that you get each week’s information in one long lecture as opposed to having it broken up into two or three smaller chunks. It can be argued that this is a personal preference, as some people prefer to learn in shorter sessions as opposed to longer ones. However, I find that the pacing for the hybrid courses often works better, as you tend to focus on one or two things each week. In a course that takes place three times a week, there is often a lot of jumping from topic to topic throughout the week. This can be problematic for some students because not everyone learns at the same pace. There could be a specific topic covered one day that a student may not understand, but by the next class, the professor has already moved on to the next topic.

While they can sometimes be difficult from a time management perspective, hybrid courses take some of the best aspects from lecture and online courses and combine them together. If you’re feeling skeptical about taking a hybrid course, all I can say is that you won’t know until you give it a chance. But if you’re someone who enjoys both online classes and lectures, then you have nothing to lose by trying one. Afterall, they’re called hybrids for a reason.