LSU students struggle with e-learning

Lupane State University (LSU) students have lamented the huge cost of internet data needed to attend online lectures.

The lockdown forced universities in the country to move to online platforms after the lockdown regulations forbade physical class attendance as one of the strategies to fight the spread of coronavirus in the country.

A student who spoke to CITE on condition of anonymity said data prices are too high hence it is difficult to attend all lessons.

“The issue of e-learning is a strain for me considering the exorbitant data prices. Lectures expect us to attend 2-hour lectures online, which consumes almost 1,5g data. With Econet, that’s over $500. So how many lectures will l be able to attend? I have 4 modules,” said the student.

“Last week there was an online test and most students did not manage to participate. That obviously will affect their final mark. Also with the issue of ZESA, somedays we cannot attend the online classes because there will be power cuts.”

Another student, Methembe Mpofu said some elderly students at the institution are not technologically literate and they struggle to use online learning platforms.

“Online learning is fairly new to our country and not everyone understands how to use these platforms. There are basic things that students are supposed to do, such as muting their microphones, finding quiet places to attend lessons from and even submitting assignments online,” said Mpofu.

LSU director of marketing and communications Zwelithini Dlamini confirmed the university is conducting online lessons via Moodle and Google classroom and WhatsApp platforms.

“Official platforms are Moodle and Google classroom and WhatsApp but the university is not providing data for the students. However, those who are not able to attend online classes will be allocated three weeks of learning and then they can sit for their examinations,” said Dlamini.

Source: Centre for Innovation and Technology (CITE)