A study from the University of Leeds has warned that the new students going into university this year will most likely suffer from impostor syndrome; as they have earned their success from teacher-assessed A-level grades and not exams.
Compared to the top grades in exams of 2019, which reached 25%, teacher-assessed grades this summer has reached 45% in the UK. Seeing the situation from the student’s perception, there is a high chance that many will feel disconnected from the university.
The study published in Psychology Learning and Teaching journal stated that: “A strong sense of belonging at university is associated with the feeling that a student “deserves” their place” which means that this year’s students' traditional exam grades that were denied due to pandemic restrictions may have a negative impact on the students, especially among lower socioeconomic status students.
The Leeds study also said that students may experience a sense of disconnect that could be exacerbated due to online teaching and the lack of human interaction. Despite in-person learning returning bit by bit, most UK institutions insist on online teaching to some extent.
The study recommends universities take measures to foster a sense of belonging, especially to the underrepresented groups of students. This can be done through measures to boost academic confidence and peer-to-peer support schemes.