Over the past 3 months, schools across the Ventura School District have switched to distanced education. At Buena, we’ve switched to the two learning platforms, Canvas, and Edgenuity. Both websites have their own upsides and downsides respectively.They were presented as the new ways for online teaching to happen in light of current events. Edgenuity was the first to be introduced, and it offered a fast way for the school to get the students learning as fast as possible in the pandemic, however flawed it may be. Canvas was introduced a little later, and its purpose was to provide a way for the Elective classes to get methods to teach their students and assign work that the teachers themselves created.
- It provided quick access to a learning platform for a large amount of students in reaction to quarantine orders.
- Full courses on a wide amount of subjects.
- User friendly to a point.
- You can save progress on most tests/quizzes.
- Site was constantly down, and when it went down it often meant increased work for students.
- The coursework almost never related to what you were learning in class before the quarantine, leading to a lot of confusion for most every student including myself.
- The amount of errors that are in the site is ridiculous, there are constant “Error 404” messages.
- Almost every course (that I had at least) had work that didn’t save, meaning that I would have to do all the work for certain assignments.
- Along with clear errors, the site itself is very buggy, with many functions on the site, such as going along in a video slideshow resulting in the site to freeze and you having to restart the video over again.
- Speaking of the video slideshow bugs, the videos themselves are almost always unskippable, leading to frustration when you have to restart them because of the site itself being faulty.
Pros+Cons of Edgenuity Follow up:
Though I don’t love defending it, it was good as a way to get online learning started up quickly. There wasn’t enough time for the schools to design their own online curriculum. However, the bugs and flaws of the website and its servers are unforgivable and they don’t relate to the modern standards of how a website for learning should hold up. I believe that Edgenuity was ok for what it needed to do, but it definitely isn’t something that would be my first choice for next year.
- The coursework is made by the teachers you have, not general coursework that is just made to fill empty space.
- The site is super user friendly and it even gives you a tour of the website and its functions.
- Every quiz (that I had to do at least, I cannot say for others) allowed me the option to leave without regards to another assignment and come back to complete it as if I’d never left it.
- There is a full calendar for coursework and its due dates, and for some assignments you can choose to receive notifications directly to your email (often for group work, or assignments that need to be done in multiple steps).
- I myself have never experienced a full-site shutdown/error page, other than a few mess ups when trying to submit assignments.
- The site itself just feels nicely put together and organized, compared to some of the clunky areas of the Edgenuity site.
- Sometimes the assignments don’t submit when you click submit, leading to you realizing that an assignment is late even though you did the work for it.
- Some of the notifications for assignments aren’t useful, or they don’t appear at great times.
Pros+Cons of Canvas Follow Up:
Continuing on with this, I believe that Canvas is several times better than Edgenuity. Not only does it allow coursework to be fully customized and issued by teachers, it organizes and relays information very easily. Furthermore, it gives you the assignments in an organized manner and you can see what you need to do, and when you need to do it at a glance, or at most a few clicks. The only negatives I see are a few minor errors on the website that can be easily overshadowed by the many positives. In my opinion, Canvas is definitely the much better platform for students and teachers alike. Canvas supports most classes in some way, and it provides a much better platform for learning. I believe that if we, as students, are to switch to a permanent online learning website, then Canvas is a much better bet than Edgenuity.
Wrapping it up:
Both platforms are catered towards the learning and growth of students, but Edgenuity just doesn’t cut it. Canvas provides many great learning methods for students and it feels like a fresh site. While there’s no 100% guarantee on what teaching method is going to be used next year, I hope that for next year’s online platform, the school primarily uses Canvas.