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Over a quarter of students unable to access uni learning

09 September 2020

27% of university students were unable to access online learning during the Covid-19 lockdown, according to NUS research reported in The Guardian which suggests that disabled students and those from poorer backgrounds were worst affected. 

The survey, which was undertaken in July by the National Union of Students (NUS) found that the main barriers to study were a lack of IT equipment and software, insufficient course materials, and poor internet connectivity.

Over 4,000 students contributed to the data, citing a lack of support to deal with the pandemic, such as counselling or financial help. Disabled students and those with caring responsibilities were more likely to have not received this support. The survey called for more help with students’ mental health and wellbeing, as well as more targeted, personalised teaching.

DR UK’s Fazilet Hadi said: “We know that last term was a nightmare for many students. But there are fears that the challenges faced from March have still not been ironed out for this new academic year. With students returning to university in the next week or so, it is imperative that universities provide full access to all necessary resources, and have clear back up plans should their means of fully connecting with students fall down.”