Paul L. Caron
Dean




Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Blackman: Should Colleges (And Law Schools) Force Students To Turn Their Cameras On In Online Classes?

Josh Blackman (South Texas), Should Colleges Force Students To Turn Their Cameras On?:

Zoom 49 (2)Zoom University will soon be in session. I suspect many faculties are wrangling with an issue: should students be forced to turn their cameras on during class?

I can see several arguments in favor of requiring students to turn on their cameras. First, if students know they are being watched, they are more likely to stay in one place and pay attention. ... Second, a professor is better able to gauge a student's understanding by looking at his or her face. ... Third, the camera helps to ensure integrity of attendance rules. ...

There are several arguments against requiring students to turn on their cameras. First, and foremost, is privacy. ... Second, students may not wish to have their backgrounds visible to others. ... Third, there is a technological problem. ...

I can see the pros and cons. I think the general policy should be that professors have the discretion to ask their students to turn on their cameras, but students can ask the professor to opt out. If there are concerns about attendance, a professor can drop an "easter egg" at a specific point to ensure the student watched the entire class.

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2020/08/blackman-should-colleges-and-law-schools-force-students-to-turn-their-cameras-on-in-online-classes.html

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Comments

please explain how an easter egg works

Posted by: Harold | Aug 14, 2020 5:55:27 AM

Nooooooo... some hack or grifter will say that’s racist!!!!!!!

Posted by: Anon | Aug 13, 2020 11:29:51 PM

It doesn't usually work very well to "force" students to learn who would otherwise choose to not. But, teachers, as a class, are generally bullies and this is one of the more innocuous ways to bully students.

Posted by: Tom | Aug 13, 2020 2:10:41 PM

I fail to see why this is an issue. Unless classroom participation is mandated, students should have the option of recording the class and listening when they choose. And if they do that, having that camera on makes no sense.

Posted by: Mike Perry | Aug 12, 2020 10:45:39 AM