‘So demotivated’: 89 per cent of Manchester students oppose moving lectures online

Over 4,000 people have now signed a petition against it

89 per cent of students are against moving lectures online, a Manchester Tab poll of over 1,700 people has found.

Recently The Manchester Tab revealed that the uni plans to move lectures online permanently as part of a long-term blended learning model.

In an interview with The Manchester Tab, University of Manchester Vice President, April McMahon discussed the plans and said online courses including completely online courses would “absolutely not” mean lower tuition fees.

Associate Vice President, Dan George confirmed the plans were not optional and were intended to be a permanent move for after the pandemic.

McMahon also refused to say whether the move would lead to staff redundancies.

A poll by The Manchester Tab

The plans to keep lectures online have since received a huge backlash from thousands of students.

A petition opposing the plans has reached over 4,000 signatures in just three days.

Student Emily Bennett, who started the petition said: “The University should be focussing on a return to normal teaching, and the petition clearly shows that this is what students want.

“It is vital that the University listens to students opinions.”

Ayma Khan, a Manc student who was involved in running research for the uni into students opinion on the move, says students are “so demotivated by online learning they don’t want any element that’s online.”

Some students also voiced their anger on Twitter, claiming the move showed “greed comes before learning and quality of experience at UoM”.

Chris Adair, another Manchester student said: “Learning is as much about engagement as knowledge and online learning severely inhibits it.”

UoM Rent Strike suggested the uni doesn’t sufficiently listen to student input, despite what the university may say. In a recent referendum of no confidence, 89 per cent of students voted against the uni’s senior management.

A University of Manchester spokesperson said: “This is not online teaching, but about  augmenting in-person lectures, seminars, labs, Q&As and discussions, and workshops with high quality online materials for self-study. We have been speaking to students for some time about ways to increase flexibility and choice and we will continue to do so to help shape this activity to their needs and the needs of each discipline. Our commitment to blended and flexible learning is part of the University strategy.”

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