As Columbia College Chicago continues to adjust to distance learning, IAM’s group of talented student workers have been shifting their regular Open Lab duties to the remote realm. We spoke with Zoey Reyes about how tutoring has changed during these challenging times and what resources students can make use of when they need assistance. Zoey is a Senior, Game Design Student, and former President of the D&D club at Columbia. Currently, Zoey is working on Hell Yeah Burgers VR for the Indie Capstone.
1) What aspects of tutoring have changed now that Columbia has moved online?
Zoey: The main thing that has changed for tutoring has been that we’ve moved primarily to appointments. A lot of my previous tutoring had been impromptu because of the sense of presence the student workers had in the lab.
2) What are some of the ways you’ve adjusted your tutoring style or methods to these changes?
Zoey: One thing I’ve noticed more recently is that we have a lack of body language now compared to what we had in a physical space, so it’s more challenging to pick up if the student we are tutoring is confused by something in the code, engine, etc. That means that we’ve had to focus on clear communication to make sure the student is learning what they need to.
3) What efforts have you and your fellow student workers made to replicate the in-person Open Lab and Equipment Lab experience?
Zoey: I think the number one way we’ve tried to replicate the Open Lab is by continuing to offer Voice/Video meetings to students during tutoring. I’ve found that a friendly face while you’re trying to learn something can make a world of difference.
4) What resources are currently available to students and what advice do you have for those seeking assistance?
Zoey: Student Workers are available for tutoring and students are encouraged to make an appointment through MS Bookings here: https://outlook.office365.com/owa/calendar/IAM1@office365.colum.edu/bookings/
We also have the Wiki that contains tutorials, definitions, and other useful information related to the IAM Dept. Classes. Here’s the link to that:http://imamp.colum.edu/mediawiki/index.php/Main_Page
And finally, for something more impromptu, we have the Teams IAM Community where people can be free to ask questions, share what they’re working on, or anything else. We’re trying our best to help and make a space for IAM students to continue learning through this difficult time.