College Student Experiences of the COVID-19 Pandemic: Concerns, Preventive Behaviors, and Impact on Academics and Career Choice
Keywords:COVID-19 pandemic, academic success, academic performance
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, during the Spring 2020 semester universities cancelled campus activities and moved all instruction online resulting in significant changes for college students. This study examined COVID-related concerns, engagement in preventive behaviors, barriers to academic success, and the impact of the pandemic on academic performance and career plans among 743 undergraduate students. Highest concerns were expressed for health of family and the pandemic’s economic effects. Over 70% reported engaging in preventive behaviors, with hand washing, wearing a face mask, and social distancing most prevalent. Despite anxiety, distracted home environments, and time management difficulties, most students indicated a relatively small effect of the pandemic on their academic success and anticipated career choice. Significant relationships were found between concern for contracting the virus and engaging in preventive behaviors, and between perceived barriers to academic success and change in academic performance.
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