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Reflections in Adjusting to a Global Pandemic from a Regional Agribusiness Program

J. Ross Pruitt, Rachna Tewari and Joseph E. Mehlhorn

Applied Economics Teaching Resources (AETR), 2020, vol. 2, issue 5

Abstract: Being able to draw upon a long history of distance-enabled education aided the University of Tennessee at Martin’s agribusiness program in adapting to a fully online teaching environment during a pandemic. Experiences of agribusiness programs in adjusting to unforeseen challenges are included in the discussion as potential solutions. Feedback was sought from students primarily taking on-campus courses regarding the difficulties experienced and the adjustments made when the campus suspended its normal operations to ensure the health and safety of the university community. Specifically, the feedback focused on adjustment factors for online transition, technological issues and familiarity with the online learning platform, quality of instruction, and students’ perceptions of the university’s overall response to the pandemic. It was noted that student success in courses during the transition was impacted by their time management skills and efficiency, which are traits desired by employers. While significant differences will continue to exist between on-campus and online teaching, student learning could be improved via innovative strategies to enhance teaching effectiveness in online courses. This commentary shares both student and faculty perspectives during the transition to online and also provides suggestions on ways to adapt to an increased need for distance-enabled learning.

Keywords: Teaching/Communication/Extension/Profession (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.308059

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