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Open Access Publications from the University of California

The Obstacles to Remote Learning for Undergraduate, Graduate, and Professional Students

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The majority of students at research universities—96% of undergraduate students and 88% of graduate students—experienced at least one obstacle in their transition to remote learning, according to the recent Student Experience in the Research University (SERU) Consortium survey of 22,519 undergraduate students and 7,690 graduate and professional students at five public research universities. The biggest obstacle among undergraduate, graduate, and professional students was the lack of motivation for remote learning during the pandemic. Other common obstacles included lack of interaction with other students, inability to learn effectively in an online format, and distracting home environments or lack of access to appropriate study spaces. The obstacles vary by students’ social class background and major/program.

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