Post Secondary Student Homelessness (PSSH) in Canada: Informing Prevention Through Qualitative Analysis

Canadian postsecondary student homelessness (PSSH) is a serious threat to the health, mental health, and academic achievement of Canadian youth. Research has shown that 85,000 students experience homelessness every day and this is associated with negative outcomes such as academic failure, anxiety, depression, unhealthy relationships, and increased risk-taking behavior. Unfortunately, this problem remains largely hidden due to stigma, under-reporting, and lack of information. We aim at understanding the topic holistically in order to suggest ways to prevent student homelessness and address it in ways that align with students’ perspectives and experiences.

The Office of the Dean of Students is proud to be a national partner in the PSSH project. The data we contribute to this project will not only support the development of a national network dedicated to destigmatizing student homelessness and raising awareness but will also inform enhanced support for students facing precarity at the U of A.


Students who have experience or concerns relating to housing security, and faculty and staff who have worked with students facing housing challenges are invited to share their expertise in order to better understand and address the needs of students who face housing insecurity.

Homelessness includes:

  • Having no shelter/sleeping outside 
  • Staying at an emergency shelter
  • Couch surfing or staying with friends
  • Being in unsafe relationships to keep housing
  • Living in substandard spaces


Sharing your experiences in this pan-Canadian research initiative will help develop solutions for students experiencing housing issues or insecurity across Canada. 


Meet for a confidential Zoom interview or an in-person interview on campus. Interviews will be recorded with consent. Receive a gift card as a thank you for participating. We need your help.


We will ask how homelessness has affected students’ mental and physical health, their education, what supports they may have used and what supports are needed from the University of Alberta.

Further information

Schedule an interview at 

Ethics ID: Pro00119775

Research Coordinator: Kevin Friese: