I didn't select teaching as my role in life to talk to a bunch of boxes on the screen. I want to talk to my students and see their responses as we venture into new ideas and experiences.
Unfortunately, when we had to move our classes online, educators met with a number of students who didn't turn on their cameras. I have spent the past year presenting OK Zoomer webinars for Higher-Ed and K-12 teachers. The #1 question they have is "How can I get my students to turn on their cameras?"
Good question. There are a plethora of solutions. Some answer that question by mandating students to keep their cameras active. This may be unfair because it is an invasion of their privacy. Other educators build empathy with their students by sharing important it is for them to have the opportunity to have eye contact with their students. Some instructors give extra credit points to students who show themselves.
I have been interested in learning about why students turn off their cameras. This Spring semester, I taught 100 students in three sections through Zoom. At the end of the semester, I asked them to share their reasons for turning off their cameras. I presented them with a list of 14 options and then provided a place where they could provide other reasons. They could select as many reasons as they wanted.
Reasons Why Students Turn Off Their Cameras*
Survey Results: Why Students Turn Off their Cameras
I have broken these results into 6 groups: Self-Conscious, Technical, Considering Others, Status Quo, Other Activity, and Privacy: