How Are Students Feeling About Brightspace? Hint: It’s Not Good

How Are Students Feeling About Brightspace? Hint: It’s Not Good

Emeline Seery, Staff Writer

With the beginning of the 2021-22 school year, there have been a lot of big changes. Students are fully back in school for the first time in 18 months, extracurricular activities are in full swing, and there are more clubs than ever available to students. But one of the biggest changes is the new online learning environment, Brightspace. 

Brightspace was launched in 2014 by global software company D2L. Its intended purpose was to be “an innovative learning management system for creating, learning, and editing online learning resources.” as stated by the Brightspace help site. And while it may have achieved that purpose in other schools, students of Crofton High have some very different thoughts about Brightspace. 

Students have varying opinions on Brightspace. However, one thing is clear: students said they do not think that Brightspace was the correct choice for the county’s new virtual learning system. 

Some people, like freshman Julia Malter, agree that “it’s just kind of inconvenient,” while others such as freshman Johnny Bertuna have the more aggressive stance of, “Brightspace is absolute garbage and should be terminated by the county immediately.” 

Sophomore Cyanne Chedick would describe Brightspace as “Tedious, confusing, and poorly structured” and says that “It just seems like the county didn’t really have the student’s best interests in mind when they introduced Brightspace.” 

And freshman Sophie Dingman said she thinks that Brightspace is “pretty stressful to get used to.” and hopes that the county “finds ways to make it easier.”

When asked about how Brightspace compares to Google Classroom, students also had a lot to say. Sophomores Sufiana Sayed and Gabrielle Romer said that on Google Classroom “It was really easy to navigate your assignments and in Brightspace it’s not that easy”, and freshman Sarah Byers said she likes that Google Classroom “gave you more updates and reminders.” Malter and Dingman agree that Google Classroom was “more organized”, and “easier to navigate.” 

But while students don’t love Brightspace, they do have a lot of feedback for how it could be better. Freshman Sasha Failli shared that “getting an email or notification when a graded assignment gets posted, just so I know it’s a priority.” would help with organization, and Malter wants Brightspace to make “an easier to-do list to navigate and make sure assignments are easy to find.” Dingman added that “having teachers explain it instead of just making us figure it out on our own.” would be very helpful.

According to students, it’s been a rough two months thus far for Brightspace. Students aren’t acclimating to it well, and are finding it hard to use Brightspace as an effective tool for learning and submitting their assignments. 

They want Brightspace to be made more accessible to them, and to assist them better in learning. Or, as Sayed said, “I want Google Classroom back.”