Western Europe

Italian students face most educational pandemic challenges, new study says

15:39, 30 November 2021
Italian students face most educational pandemic challenges, new study says Photo: pixabay.com

Kids in Italy faced the most challenges related to education and wellbeing in general in 2020-2021 during the pandemic, the new research published by Kantar Market Research Institute said.


Overall, 76% of parents recognize that their children faced challenges due to the outbreak. Among them, 55% of Western European students experienced a lack of social connection, 36% had difficulty concentrating in an online classroom environment, and 26% mentioned difficulty understanding subject material online.

"Children in Italy faced the most challenges related to education and wellbeing (82%)," the research by GoStudent edtech company reveals.

At the same time, 68% of students in Germany and 65% in France experienced the most learning gaps in one or more subjects, followed by Austria (60%), Italy (59%), and Spain (57%). 

Among the surveyed countries the fewest gaps were performed in the Netherlands, the study shows that only 58% of respondents acknowledged such an issue.

Germany, followed by Austria, showed the highest amount of learning gaps across all four of the main subjects: Maths, English, Physics, and Chemistry.

Lack of social connection (55%) was cited as the biggest coronavirus era challenge, which was felt mostly in Italy and by girls aged 16–18 living in large cities with parents who are employed.

Difficulty concentrating in an online classroom environment (36%) was the second. The challenge was felt equally across the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, France, Italy, and more among boys aged 10–15 years old living in rural areas or small towns.

In general 16–18-year-olds (63%) found the lack of social connection is more challenging than 10–15-year-olds (59%).

The survey was conducted from 1 October to 16 October 2021.  A 20-minute questionnaire covered 10– to 18-year-olds and their parents in Austria, Germany, France, Spain, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Italy. Around 12,000 respondents shared their views on the online learning process during the COVID-19 pandemic, including educational wellbeing, study habits, learning gaps, and adaptive learning they faced.

Recently, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned of a new variant of coronavirus Omicron which was first spotted in South Africa and it could have already spread to many countries worldwide, including the UK, Australia, Israel, Italy, Germany, Hong Kong, Botswana, Netherlands, Belgium, and Canada.

CEO of Moderna Stephane Bancel has already spiked fears that the company's vaccines are less effective against the newly discovered strain of COVID-19. Starting from Tuesday, Japan closed its borders from entries in response to the reports of the new variant becoming the second country following Israel to resort to the toughest suppression measures in an attempt to ease the pandemic.