Syiah Kuala University began implementing online lectures as a preventive measure to prevent the spread of covid-19. Head of the Research and Development Center for Indonesian Realistic Mathematics Education Prof. Dr. Rahmah Johar, S.Pd., M.Pd said that this policy was able to foster lecturer creativity in delivering subject to students. (Banda Aceh, 3/20/2020).
Prof. Rahmah explained, online learning is actually not something new. However, the current condition of the coronavirus outbreak makes this learning method one of the most effective ways of learning. The conditions are urgent, encouraging lecturers to think creatively so that lecture material can be conveyed well to students.
Since the rector’s circular regarding online learning applies to Unsyiah, Prof. Rahmah began to apply online lectures to teach her courses in the Mathematics and Natural Sciences Faculty Study Program, which is full of mathematical symbols and equations.
"Alhamdulillah, there was a G-Meet Tutorial for video conferencing, so I was very helped. Lectures run interactively and students may ask questions related to the material discussed, "said the Unsyiah Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences Lecturer.
If on a normal day, Prof. Rahmah conducts lectures through blended learning, not full on line. Around 75% of the available time is held face-to-face, while the other 25% is online. Then before the meeting students can access information about lecture activities, reading sources, and assessments. All this information is sourced on the elearning.unsyiah.ac.id website.
"Sometimes I start lectures with a question and answer method or brainstorming, then students discuss to continue their investigation in solving problems," she said.
However, this lecture can only be carried out for subjects that are more dominant social science or pedegogics, not for courses that are full of high-level mathematical symbols.
However, because the current conditions require social distance, Prof. Rahmah also had to prepare full online lectures for courses in differential equations which contained many mathematical symbols and advanced calculus knowledge. Prof. Rahmah was grateful, because the lecture began at two in the afternoon, so that she had enough time to collecting lecture material.
"Even though lectures are full online, the interaction between students and lecturers is still intertwined. Students are not burdened to ask questions and I can respond directly. And other students can listen,” she said.