COVID-19 has disrupted the whole academic system. It has led to the closure of colleges and universities across Canada. All the students, especially the international students of Canada, had experienced rapid changes to their academic environment with courses moved online or postponed and, in some cases, cancelled.
A recent survey has been conducted on over 10000 postsecondary students. More than one quarter (26%) of participants had some of their courses postponed or cancelled due to the pandemic. The number was 26%, for the undergraduate degree, and masters or professional degree, it was 28%. In doctoral research, the percentage was lower relatively (14%) because it was less coursework and focused on research. This academic disruption percentage saw its heights on the field of service with 56%, in trades, it was 53%, and on the health care field, the disruption was 41% because these study fields include coursework related to applied learning, labs and hands-on instruction, which cannot deliver online.
For many students, the transition from offline to online learning helped them to continue their studies. But many students had to face severe challenges because of this rapid shift. Some were not equipped to adjust to this learning method either because they learn better in person or lack the tools required to continue online learning. Moreover, the stress and depression due to the worldwide pandemic situation are like an added headache. The pandemic situation has made it even more difficult for the international students who live in Canada.
In this blog, you will get an idea about how the Covid-19 has disrupted the traditional route of education-to-citizenship and scattered the future of international students into uncertainty.
After the pandemic hit, the Canadian universities' international students were given two choices. They can either continue their studies in Canada or go back to their home countries and study remotely. As per a survey, it has been found that in nearly 3000 colleges in the USA, only 10% had plans to offer their instruction entirely online, with the remaining 34% of institutions intending to run classes primarily online, 21% in hybrid format, 23% primarily in person, and 4% entirely in-person.
In such a tumultuous situation, most international students opted for the latter option to study remotely from their home countries. Canada ranks third globally as a destination for international students. In 2018, international students contributed nearly $22 billion to the economy and 170,000 jobs. In recent years, international student outreach has become a key focus area for the Canadian government. But the pandemic has changed the whole scenario into obscurity.
Keeping all this in mind, many universities have devised unique strategies to aid international students affected by the pandemic. They are helping students in financial distress. Offering complimentary 14-day quarantine facilities on campus grounds and migrating nearly all student services online. Students are still hopeful to go back to Canada after the Covid situation gets over to complete their education.
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