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Brown community responds to in-person shopping period

In-person shopping period brings excitement, unique challenges

Shopping period has returned to the classroom after being conducted solely online for the past three semesters. While many students showed excitement at being able to socialize and meet teachers and fellow students face to face, this shopping period comes with unique challenges and protocols. 

Naphat Permpredanun ’24 expressed preference for in-person shopping, especially “in terms of socializing,” and meeting professors as well as peers who share academic interests. 

While online learning offers more flexibility, and the ability to seamlessly toggle between classes, being “in person, being able to talk to a teacher, being near people … (is) exciting because I haven’t been in a classroom for real in two years,” said Allen Dufort ’24.

According to Professor Maya Krinsky, adjunct lecturer in Visual Arts, “it’s wonderful to see student enthusiasm for the classes and to meet everyone in person.” At the same time, there are “a lot of really great aspects to using remote interactions and having several assignments be more asynchronous and flexible, which I do plan to integrate into my class,” Krinsky added. 

Beyond the opportunity to interact with their peers, students say in person shopping period can facilitate more candid and genuine interactions between professors and students. 

“It’s a lot easier and a lot more helpful to be able to introduce myself to professors and talk to them about why I might have an overlap or why I need an override code,” said Peyton Newman ’23.

Not all classes have transitioned to in-person shopping period, and some students have been unable to shop in person because of class protocols and individual circumstances. 

Permpredanun said he shopped a class that was supposed to be in person, but “because of some incident ... the professor could not come in, so it was changed to online instead.” 

Other courses, such as MATH 0520: “Linear Algebra,” are mostly online this semester. It’s a “pre-recorded class, so it’s not like you can really shop it, you just see the first lecture and see how you thought about it,” Dufort said. 

Kaiya Arushi Pandit ’25, who had to do a week of shopping period virtually, said that each class has accommodated virtual students differently. 

“One of them was (over) Zoom, one of them was a recorded lecture,” Pandit said. “(And for) my other two classes, there was nothing. I just emailed them and asked my friends what they did in class. It was honestly not much because it was the first week, but all the course material was on Canvas, so it was really easy to access.”

According to Pandit, most professors were accommodating, as long as she reached out and informed them of her situation. 

As for Zooming into an all in-person class, Pandit enjoyed the experience. “It felt like I was in the class. I wasn’t off to the side or anything, I could see the lecture, I could see the slides and I could talk if I wanted to,” she added. 

Many Brunonians are excited to be back in person for shopping period, despite this semester’s unique circumstances and challenges. In fact, Krinsky said that shopping period “felt a little more busy this year,” in comparison to previous years. 

Yet limited class space continues to constrain the number of people that can shop certain courses in person.

In VISA 0140: “Photography Foundation,” for which the waitlist is three times the 12-person class capacity, the small studio space is limiting shoppers, Krinsky explained. “I wish I could let everybody into the class!”


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