THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON HIGHER EDUCATION
BULLETIN #2 MARCH 30 – APRIL 3, 2020
“The emotionally and spiritually sane response is to be prepared to be forever
Aisha S. Ahmad, assistant professor of political science,
University of Toronto, commenting on the impact of COID-19 on the Academy.
The University of California has eased requirements for enrolled and accepted
students in response to educational disruptions brought about by COVID-19.
Measures include suspending the letter grade requirement for academic courses
taken in the winter, spring or summer terms, being flexible with students who
need more time to meet registration and deposit deadlines and suspending
standardized test requirements for admission. Financial aid directors will review
the financial aid offers of admitted students.
Canada has extended its admission deadline date from May 1 st to June 1 st .
The Chinese Ministry of Education has postponed the gao kao examination from
June to July. More than 10 million Chinese students sit annually for the
Last week the D.S. State Department stopped providing routine visa services in
many parts of the world because of COVID-19. It is unclear when the suspension
will end. It is clear the negative impact this action will have for admitted students
to U.S. colleges and universities.
S&P Global Ratings has given a negative outlook to private student housing
projects in addition to higher education in the U.S. overall.
Faculty and staff hiring at many schools in the U.S., including Brown University,
have suspended hiring through next summer.
The University of Minnesota has asked all departments with current hires to
consider delaying start dates.
Simon Marginson, director of the Centre for Global Higher Education, wrote the
following: “I think we are looking at least a five year-year recovery period in terms
of the numbers of people that move between countries for education.”
Author’s note: With all due respect to Mr. Marginson, I think it is too early to
suggest the number of years that it will take for robust student mobility to
resume. Also, I believe there is ample evidence to predict that student mobility in
Asia is positioned to recover earlier than in Europe and the United States. Finally, I
will predict that western countries will never experience the same number of
international students that they enjoyed in pre-COVID-19.
According to the Beijing-based consultancy group, Huaan, the 1.3 million Chinese
student education tourism market, worth 33 billion yuan ($46 billion U.S.), has
A survey conducted by the ed-tech company, Cirkled, surveyed 968 high school
students and found that 69% stated the health crisis is changing their financial
situation with respect to higher education. And more than a quarter of the
students said that COVID-19 will affect their college choice. 16% said they were
considering a school closer to home and 12% said they were delaying enrollment.
A survey of Chinese students studying abroad revealed that 76% want to return to
China. This week the Chinese government sent planes to the U.K. to fly students
back to China.
This week the Council for International Educational Exchange eliminated more
than 600 jobs.
EAIE survey revealed that more than 73% of respondents indicated that outbound
student mobility has been negatively impacted and 54% indicated staff mobility
has been impacted.
A survey of 172 U.S. college and university presidents, published by Inside Higher
Education revealed: One-third expect in-person classes to resume by the fall
semester but 4 in 10 said they could not predict the percentage, The mental
health of students topped the list of the presidents’ short-term concerns followed
by the mental health of their employees. 87% of the presidents listed financial
concerns and student attrition as their most pressing concerns.
98% moved the majority of all in-person classes to online instruction. 95%
suspended international travel for faculty and staff. 51% closed most or all of
their buildings and 43% invested in new, online learning resources.
Author’s Note: See Doug Lederman’s article in the March 27, 2020 issue of Inside
Higher Education for the full report.
“Last year’s words belong to last year’s language, and next year’s words await
I hope I have better news to report next week.
Next update: April 19, 2020