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Adapting to university during Covid-19: a student’s perspective

17 September 2020 | by Guest

As students, autumn always brings the excitement of returning to university. But this year the return will look very different due to the Covid-19 pandemic. To best support students, and understand the impact of the pandemic on their studies and research, the BPS is running a Covid-19 impact survey, and wants to hear your views.

Simran Basra, a third year Psychology Student at the University of Liverpool, shares her thoughts on how coronavirus has impacted her studies, and her feelings ahead of the return to campus.

The news of the global pandemic has caused unprecedented amounts of disruption on a global scale and when the nationwide lockdown was enforced earlier this year, many of us were left with feelings of confusion, uncertainty and anxiety.

As students, we navigated the physical and mental challenges of lockdown, isolation and social distancing.

Whether it was after moving back home or whilst staying at university, we all had to adapt and overcome the obstacles set before us.

On top of this, the transition to digital learning with conference calling, virtual lectures and online exams was a novel concept to students and faculty alike and became a challenge in itself to become accustomed to.

The idea of physical isolation and distancing has been studied in psychology for decades and unequivocally comes with mental challenges when put in place over a prolonged period of time.

Coupled with the task of completing the academic year in a completely unknown setting, this has understandably evoked an emotional response across the student body, from a nationwide standpoint.

Therefore, we recognise the importance of providing outlets in which thoughts and feelings can be shared and discussed

The BPS wants to know the ways in which COVID-19 has impacted your studies this year.

For example, has the transition to online learning been a difficult one or have you found it has enhanced your ability to learn and work independently?

How has lockdown as a whole affected you and what mechanisms did you put in place to adapt and cope?

And we would also like to know if you have found any positives to the lockdown measures in place, for instance, gaining the time to develop a new hobby, begin a personal project or just taking advantage of the opportunity to relax while the world slowed down.

The experience of university can be a defining moment in the lives of many, so the frustration caused by this disruption is justified and rational.

However, as we put the peak of the pandemic behind us, we must plan for the future, which includes a return to campus and adjusting to a life with the appropriate provisions in place to provide us with a ‘new normal’ way of living.

In preparation for the new academic year, we would like to know your thoughts about making the return to university as well as the sufficiency of information and guidance provided by your institution including the availability of timetables and the balance between face-to-face and virtual learning.

Furthermore, do you have any general concerns for your return to university, perhaps regarding social distancing provisions or hygiene and cleanliness practices in shared spaces?

Lastly, the COVID-19 pandemic has been an insightful experience in opening up conversations surrounding mental health and we would like to know if your desires and interests in psychology have been strengthened because of this.

So please complete the BPS survey in order to voice your opinion and share your views on your return to university as we collaborate together in restoring normality.

Complete the Covid-19 impact survey for students 

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