The Expectation Gap: New research published on the student experience through and after Covid

New research from Pearson and Wonkhe suggests that though students have found learning during Covid-19 painful, improving online learning will have the most direct impact on students’ future wellbeing, engagement and motivation.

From almost 3.500 students surveyed, two fifths of respondents said they have struggled to manage their wellbeing and one third cited challenges with new forms of learning and managing their own time and schedule. Nearly half (49 per cent) said that as a result of Covid-19 they are less confident that they are ready to progress to the next stage in their education or career.

When asked how universities can meet expectations for the year ahead,59 per cent chose “high quality online teaching” as the most important thing their university could do to support a blended learning environment. For students, this means more interactive learning, with fewer pre-recorded lectures and slide decks, and more opportunity to ask questions. They want more personal attention from lecturers and tutors, with more one-to-one support. They want help with accessing technologies and learning resources, and they want their universities to be clear in communications both about what the corporate university is planning and what’s happening on their course.

Claire Walsh, Head of Academic Development & Inclusivity comments: “This first national survey flags how structuring teaching and learning alongside wider university offers can create a sense of belonging.  The use of induction is important, so our new and returning students are supported and have the courage to learn through quality online and campus-based learning at Sheffield Hallam”. 

Read the full survey findings  

Read the analysis of the survey findings in this WonkHE Blog post