April 14, 2020
Failing forward is a concept that is particularly resonant now, a month into academe’s shift to remote instruction. That’s because, for many faculty members new to online teaching, much of what they resolutely tried in the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic is going badly.
I’ve spent the past 12 years in online teaching, and I’ve come to love it. But what I’m hearing from instructors — via social media, email, and old-fashioned conversations — is growing despair. They are exhausted by their efforts to teach class in real time via Zoom and other videoconference formats, and so are their students. Many academics seem to think they’re doomed to this mentally draining existence until the end of the semester, or beyond.