In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, this research aimed to explore the relationship between dormitory environment, learning engagement, and mental health among college students, with a special focus on college students of different gender groups. We conducted a cross-sectional survey of students from 45 universities in China. For mental health, we tested students for depression using the 5-Item WHO Well-Being Index (WHO-5). The dormitory environment is exemplified by a typical four-person dormitory layout in China, which is assessed in four main areas: site location, functional layout, maintenance management, and view from the window. Meanwhile, we examined the relationship between mental health and the dormitory environment using learning engagement as a mediating variable. We found that the dormitory environment positively influences college students’ mental health through the mediating role of learning engagement. We found gender differences in mental health among Chinese college students. The mental health of male students was better than that of female students. More importantly, we found differences in the influence of dormitory environment on the mental health of college students in different gender groups. In the dormitory environment-learning engagement pathway, the influence was more pronounced for male students. In the learning engagement—mental health pathway, the total and indirect effects were more substantial for women than for men. As our study took place during the epidemic, the examination of the relationship between dormitory environment and college students’ mental health in this study will also inspire college administrators to pay more attention to the dormitory environment and support the development of public health policies to promote college students’ mental health. We encourage further research on the relationship between dormitory environment and college students’ mental health, which will promote the greening of college dormitories and improve college students’ mental health.

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