COVID-19-Distance Learning: A Study of the Psychological Impact on Ibn Tofail University English Studies Students
COVID-19 is a serious pandemic that has changed the world economically, socially, and even educationally. For precautionary purposes, the higher education system in Morocco has decided to go for Emergency Remote Education (ERE) during the academic year 2020-2021. Like many other universities, Ibn Tofail University (ITU) has opted for online platforms to contain the spread of the virus. However, this sudden shift to online classes due to Covid-19 has had tremendous psychological effects on students’ wellbeing. Actually, this study sought to investigate stress and anxiety as consequences of ERE affecting Ibn Tofail students, particularly semester (S)1, semester (S)3, and semester (S)5 students majoring in English studies during the Fall session of 2021. The study was also meant to measure the level of stress and anxiety among ITU English students according to their study level, gender, and age. This cross-sectional study was conducted in March by the end of the Fall session of 2021. It used Psychological Stress Scale (PSS) and Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) to test students’ stress and anxiety levels. Data were collected from three-levels of students; S1, S3, and S5, n=277, using a survey in Google Form. The survey was sent to students via their institutional emails, Google Classrooms, and Facebook groups. The results were processed and analyzed using SPSS version 26 software which indicated that 31.8% of students experienced severe stress, and 31% showed severe anxiety. Another interesting finding was that female students were more prone to stress and anxiety than male students. Nevertheless, it was surprising that stress and anxiety levels differed among students according to their age and did not vary according to their study level.
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