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COVID-19, lockdown and impact among Spanish university students: an exploratory analysis

Joseph Josy Lévy, Miguel David Guevara Espinar

Research framework: Using the theoretical frameworks of quality of life and the sociology of technology uses, this qualitative article explores the consequences of lockdown following the COVID-19 pandemic among Spanish students enrolled at the University of Salamanca.

Objectives: This article analyzes the impact of lockdown on the quality of life of university students in different spheres, such as residential, mental health, diet, alcohol and drug consumption, physical exercise, use of information and communication technologies (ICTs), academic work, financial repercussions and coping strategies.

Methodology: Exploratory interviews were conducted with 12 respondents (6 male and 6 female students) enrolled at the University of Salamanca on the impact of lockdown in the different spheres of life. The transcripts were coded and thematically analyzed to identify the salient dimensions, convergences and differences in the students’ experience.

Results: This study allowed us to identify the positive and negative repercussions of lockdown following the COVID-19 pandemic on the quality of life, to identify the repertoire of reactions to this extreme event in the different spheres of life, and in particular in the use of information and communication technologies at the social and academic level.

Conclusions: Our analysis allows us to conclude that the lockdown was not always a problematic period, but that it allowed the exploration of existential issues and new behaviours likely to contribute to personal development.

Contribution: This article contributes to the research on COVID-19 and university students from a qualitative perspective that is still not widely used in the growing literature on the pandemic.




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