December 2, 2023

A majority of teens say online learning is either worse or much worse than in-person schooling.
Most teens prefer in-person school to online school, both for the academic and social aspects. 
A majority (59 percent) of teens say online learning is worse or much worse than in-person schooling. This percentage is lower for Black teens, though: Only 45 percent say that online schooling is worse.
That’s according to a recent Common Sense Media and SurveyMonkey poll(Opens in a new window) on the return to virtual school in the midst of COVID-19. The poll received 890 responses, with 707 responses in the 16-to-17 age range and the rest ages 13 to 15. 
On the biggest academic challenge they expect to face this year, 42 percent of teens say “learning remotely” followed by the “uncertainty of the pandemic” (37 percent), “emotional upheaval” (32 percent), “being able to access their teachers” (32 percent), “unreliable internet” (27 percent), “access to books and school supplies” (17 percent), and “access to devices” (11 percent). 
More than half of teens (61 percent) are worried about falling behind because of the pandemic. They’re worried about the social drawbacks to online schooling too: that they will lose connections with friends (56 percent), miss out on extracurricular non-sports activities (53 percent), and lose opportunities for scholarships (52 percent), and that the pandemic will negatively impact their future job or college aspirations (50 percent). 
Teens generally feel the same level of connection to friends and loneliness that they did in March: 48 percent of teens feel less connected to their friends than usual, and 40 percent of teens feel more lonely than usual. 
Parents can add these concerns to the list of things they worry about in pandemic times, including that their kids are becoming addicted to screens
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Sherin Shibu is a junior at Columbia University majoring in English Literature. She took a nontraditional path to junior year, taking two gap years to work as a fellow at Business Insider and GovLoop, among others. She’s written about everything from cybersecurity and virtual reality to business strategy and leadership; she’s a versatile writer with a track record of success. At PCMag, she hopes to cover the news with accuracy and style, growing as a writer as she works as a News Fellow.
Read Sherin’s full bio is a leading authority on technology, delivering lab-based, independent reviews of the latest products and services. Our expert industry analysis and practical solutions help you make better buying decisions and get more from technology.
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