Teaching and Learning in the Time of COVID: The Student Perspective


  • Barbara Means Digital Promise
  • Julie Neisler Digital Promise




Teaching and Learning, Online Learning, COVID-19, Students


This article describes findings from the Survey of Student Perceptions of Remote Teaching and Learning, which was administered to a random national sample of 1,008 U.S. undergraduates taking for-credit college courses that began with in-person classes and shifted to remote instruction in spring 2020. Course satisfaction levels were much lower after courses moved online, and students recounted an array of barriers to their continued learning. More than 1 in 6 students experienced frequent internet connectivity issues and/or hardware and software problems severe enough to interfere with their ability to continue learning in their courses. Students from all backgrounds struggled to stay motivated and missed getting immediate instructor feedback and collaborating with their fellow students. Students of color and students from lower-income households experienced more challenges than did non-Hispanic White students and students from higher-income households. However, even with the challenges of an unplanned shift to remote learning, a majority of students were at least somewhat satisfied with their learning in the course after COVID, and satisfaction was higher for those courses using more of the practices recommended for effective online instruction. 


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Section I: Investigating Teaching, Learning, and Student Supports in the U.S.