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In response to the COVID-19 epidemic, many Chinese education institutions have launched online Chinese courses, including the transformation of traditional teaching platforms to learn Chinese online modality and technology-enabled application software for learning Chinese. Under this situation, learning Chinese online has become a must for many non-native Chinese learners. So, how do these online teachers teach? How should students learn?
Compared with offline, learning Chinese online is more flexible. Some learners will choose to buy online courses to learn Chinese systematically, and they are interested in the online courses of “Systematized Chinese” and “Chinese Traditional Culture” offered to the whole world. There are also learners who use mobile application software, then customize it to fit their interests. This is an effective way for it allows students to choose their own teaching mode. However, like everything else, Chinese online courses, too, have both advantages and disadvantages.
Its advantages are shown in several aspects: during the epidemic, it ensured the smooth progress of teaching. Online learning allowed students to continue their Chinese learning without any huff. Another advantage is that it is not limited to the number of students in class, but a wider group of students attend classes. Nowadays, more people have access to digital platforms. Plus, the students’ pressure is low and the learning atmosphere is relatively relaxed. Without the pressure of face-to-face classes, people learn in moderation which directly affects their enthusiasm.
Students can study anytime and anywhere to realize fragmented and personalized teaching and learning. The teaching resources of the course are rich and the media are diverse. Easy to obtain, spread, share and save, without taking notes like in a traditional classroom. In addition, Teachers can inform students of teaching-related contents, resources, plans, notices, etc. in time with the help of online communication tools, thus saving the time and cost of information circulation Chinese online courses also have the advantage of watching the course playback, which is very important for international students.
However, the online learning modality has its disadvantages. The most important thing is the lack of interaction between teachers and students. One person is facing the computer, and there is no atmosphere in class with classmates. In face-to-face classes, if you can’t understand a concept in class, you can ask your classmates next to you for clarifications. However, now it’s mainly the teacher, because there are many students online at the same time, and it’s not realistic if everyone speaks. So far, I have been taking classes for nearly two weeks. The content of the course is very good, but the course form still needs a process of adaptation. For example, the homework is a little difficult.
Another shortcoming is that the interaction between teachers and students is less frequent than that in a traditional class, and the interaction between students and students is even less. There is more close interaction between teachers, students, and students in the offline classrooms, so teachers and students are more likely to have empathy. Another disadvantage is that teachers can’t observe and supervise students’ learning as in-depth as in face-to-face classes.
Therefore, higher requirements are put forward for students’ self-discipline and self-control ability. If it is a live class, facing the global students, it is difficult to unify the teaching time due to the time difference. The live class has certain requirements for network conditions, computer hardware, and software. If there are too many students in class, there may be technical problems such as delays, which will affect students’ classroom experience. So, Online one-on-one courses are a good choice to ensure the quality of learning.
The biggest difference in students’ feedback is that teachers usually let us express our opinions in class. The atmosphere of class discussion is productive, and students like to discuss with everyone.
Generally speaking, I have been taking online classes for a period of time. When I can’t go to school, Chinese online classes are a good alternative. After all, it allows for breaking the time and space limit. Online Chinese course is a good choice in the current epidemic situation.
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