COVID-19 Student Impact Survey Results

Jump to: What went well? | What were the challenges? | About the survey

The COVID-19 Student Impact Survey was launched in May 2020 to help units across the University better understand the student experience in the Winter 2020 term. These results highlight the experiences of current McGill students. They will be used along with the results of a new survey for incoming students to inform how we serve and support students in the coming year.

Highlights of findings

While many students acknowledged some of the beneficial aspects of remote learning, they told us that they faced several challenges with this new model.


What went well?

Percentage of undergraduate students

Percentage of
graduate students

Feedback topic

appreciated flexible hours to complete coursework
had sufficient access to a reliable computer

Students who are facing financial challenges in meeting all costs for the semester or academic year can book a remote meeting with a Financial Aid Counselor to look at their finances and work on solutions together.

had sufficient access to videoconferencing software

All McGill students have access to three IT platforms: MS Teams, Zoom, and WebEx.

had access to the software needed for their program
had access to online resources from McGill Libraries

Inaddition to the over 3.5 million e-books and e-journals already available, students now have access to many of the Library's print materials through the Hathi Trust Digital Library's Emergency Temporary Access Service.


What were the challenges?

Percentage of undergraduate students

Percentage of
graduate students

Feedback topic

did not have a quiet place to learn/study

Tutorial Services has compiled a list of resources and information to help students adjust their study habits, including tips on how to prepare a study space.

had difficulty focusing and paying attention

TLS has created a Remote Learning Resources page to help students stay on track while continuing their studies remotely, including strategies for success, study tactics, and learning with Zoom.


Tutorial Services has developed a wide array of Learning Strategies for students, including resources focused on Remote Learning and a suite of webinars on topics like time management, note-taking, exam strategies and more.

experienced personal stress

The Student Wellness Hub offers virtual services and programming to help you feel supported and connected.


McGill students can also access Keep.meSAFE, a student-focused mental health counselling service that provides access to licensed counsellors through phone, video call, and secure mobile chat. Information is available for undergraduate and graduate students.

want help to get and stay motivated

Connect and study virtually with classmates through Zoom, Microsoft Teams or on myCourses discussion boards.


For upcoming webinars to support students’ remote learning success, undergraduates should register for SKILLS21. Graduate students should consult the bimonthly SKILLSETS ebulletins for upcoming events and resources or visit the SKILLSETS webpage.


Consult the list of student services available online.

About the survey

The COVID-19 Student Impact Survey was a collaboration between Teaching and Learning Services (TLS), Student Services, and Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (GPS). Its purpose was to help units across the University to understand the student experience since the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced a temporary campus closure and courses to move to remote delivery and changed the way we all live. Survey questions were divided into three sections: 1) Home Situation, 2) Experiences with Remote Learning, and 3) Intentions for Future Study. Results are being used to inform how we serve and support McGill students in the coming academic year.

The survey was open from May 1 through to May 24, 2020. It was administered to a population of over 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students who were enrolled at McGill in the winter 2020 term after the add/drop deadline. The response rate was 22%. Female students were overrepresented by 9% and international students by 5%; the sample was determined to be representative by Faculty.

Back to top