Satire: 5 ways to keep yourself awake during Zoom classes

What to do when your eyeballs are about to fall out

Satire: 5 ways to keep yourself awake during Zoom classes

Editor's Note: This article appeared in The Eagle's October 2020 virtual print edition.

The following piece is satire and should not be misconstrued for actual reporting. Any resemblance to a student, staff or faculty member is coincidental.

College classes over Zoom are no one's favorite. Not a class goes by that at least one student hilariously fails to cover their yawning from everyone else in the class. So when your eyelids are in danger of shutting down, consider these tricks to keep yourself awake.

  1. Memorize members of Congress

Get to know each member’s state, district, party affiliation and caucus memberships. You can start with well-known members like “The Squad.” Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can start with members nobody has ever heard of. For example, see if you can correctly identify which one of these three members of Congress does not exist: Ralph Abraham (LA-05), Pat Green (OH-06) or Ken Calvert (CA-42). Didn’t think you could. And don’t forget: House districts will change after the 2020 census, so you’ll have to start all over next semester!

  1. Calculate the cost of a 75 minute class

One semester’s worth of tuition at AU costs $22,744. There are 15 weeks of classes in a semester, meaning that you pay about $1,516.27 per week. Assuming you take 15 credits, that means you’re in class for 12.5 hours (or 750 minutes) each week, resulting in a cost of about $121.30 per hour, or $2.02 per minute. Thus, a 75 minute class costs approximately $151.63 in tuition. This isn’t even counting room and board or those pesky activity and sports center fees! You can find those additional costs on the AU website and crunch the numbers during your next class. 

  1. Balance a globe on your head

The ideal choice for the School of International Service students who want to demonstrate their forehead dexterity and international affairs acumen simultaneously. Students in other schools may substitute an item representing their field of study. For instance, School of Public Affairs students are encouraged to use a pile of campaign posters, buttons and other paraphernalia. 

  1. Envision places on campus you’d rather be

The empty, winding halls of the Asbury Building. The East Quad building’s eerie basement. The sub-terrace of Kerwin Hall (yes it’s a real thing). Any of these phenomenal campus attractions would be better than staring at a computer screen filled with little boxes.

  1. Actually pay attention to the lecture

Some students read, take notes and prepare the assigned material in advance of each class session. This little-known practice makes it much easier to concentrate on the words coming out of the professor’s mouth. Consider attending office hours (you know those things you saw on the syllabus on the first day of class) to figure out what the heck the professor actually wants you to be able to do by the end of the semester. Warning: Paying attention and going to office hours may increase your risk of being called on. The Seagle retains no liability in the event of this happening. 

The next time you have a sleep-inducing class, use these strategies to keep yourself alert. Feel free to share these tips with friends, classmates and professors. Especially professors — some of them may benefit the most! 

Owen Boice is a sophomore in the School of Public Affairs and a satire columnist at The Eagle.

oboice@theeagleonline.com

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