This summer, Luciana was Franklin's Online & Hybrid Learning Environments intern. Here, she gives her report, reviewing the technologies and efforts made this year to ensure success for the fall semester and beyond.

The uncertainty that Covid-19 brought affects all aspects in our lives, from how to interact with people to our jobs and educational systems. As a university student in 2020, my future was at stake. Would I learn all my course materials effectively? Would I graduate? What measures would my university take to handle the situation? These questions haunted me and my parents only for a short period of time, as FUS was able to address them promptly. Amidst the unknown, FUS faculty and staff quickly transitioned to online platforms that continued our learning experience smoothly.

Switching to an online spring semester presented various challenges for faculty and students alike. Together, we learned how to use Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Moodle. FUS implemented a variety of online platforms, giving faculty and student the opportunity to gain experience in each of them. Learning how to mute our microphones, screen sharing, presenting online, and test taking were processes that took patience and an open mind. However, the experience has been very rewarding!

As the Online & Hybrid Learning Environments Intern during summer 2020, I assessed student and faculty experiences with online learning and teaching by conducting surveys. Not surprisingly, both students and faculty reported their satisfaction with the job done. I also mastered the usage of these online platforms to assist professors and students with any issues they may come across. Later on during the summer, I developed handy manuals on tips and steps to further explore these platforms. These manuals will soon be published on the Information Technology Services (IT) page. Lastly, I worked with IT on preparing the classroom experience to support our hybrid learning program for fall 2020. Classrooms are now fully equipped with speakers, soundproof panels, cameras, and tablets to assure the best learning experience for students on campus or remotely connected.

As a student who took a hybrid course during the summer, I can attest to the fact that all students were accommodated. Peers from different time zones were able to participate and provide input for class discussions and no one was left behind! There is always room for improvement: FUS faculty and IT staff know this, we all understand that we are learning as we move forward. Franklin is ready to teach the next semesters successfully!

For all COVID-19 updates, including the Fall 2020 hybrid learning program, go to our Coronavirus Information and Updates page.