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Student experience

National Student Survey (NSS)

Are you in your final year? The National Student Survey (NSS) is your chance to share your university experience – both what you liked and what you think could be improved.

The NSS 2018 is now closed.

What is the National Student Survey?

The survey gives you the opportunity to share your experiences of your time here at Kent – both what you liked and what you think could be improved.

This information will be anonymous and will help us understand the experience of our students and to help inform change.

The 2018 NSS will run from 22 January until 30 April 2018. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete. We recommend doing the survey as early as possible because Ipsos MORI, the independent research company who manage the survey, will continue to remind you until you complete it.

The NSS questions

The survey will ask you to rate the following questions on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being 'Definitely Agree'.

The teaching on my course

  1. Staff are good at explaining things.
  2. Staff have made the subject interesting.
  3. The course is intellectually stimulating.
  4. My course has challenged me to achieve my best work.

Learning opportunities

  1. My course has provided me with opportunities to explore ideas or concepts in depth.
  2. My course has provided me with opportunities to bring information and ideas together from different topics.
  3. My course has provided me with opportunities to apply what I have learnt.

Assessment and feedback

  1. The criteria used in marking have been clear in advance.
  2. Marking and assessment has been fair.
  3. Feedback on my work has been timely.
  4. I have received helpful comments on my work.

Academic support

  1. I have been able to contact staff when I needed to.
  2. I have received sufficient advice and guidance in relation to my course.
  3. Good advice was available when I needed to make study choices on my course.

Overall satisfaction

  1. Overall, I am satisfied with the quality of the course.
  2. Looking back on the experience, are there any particularly positive or negative aspects you would like to highlight?

Organisation and management

  1. The course is well organised and running smoothly.
  2. The timetable works efficiently for me.
  3. Any changes in the course or teaching have been communicated effectively.

Learning resources

  1. The IT resources and facilities provided have supported my learning well.
  2. The library resources (e.g. books, online services and learning spaces) have supported my learning well.
  3. I have been able to access course-specific resources (e.g. equipment, facilities, software, collections) when I needed to.

Learning community

  1. I feel part of a community of staff and students.
  2. I have had the right opportunities to work with other students as part of my course.

Student voice

  1. I have had the right opportunities to provide feedback on my course.
  2. Staff value students’ views and opinions about the course.
  3. It is clear how students’ feedback on the course has been acted on.
  4. The students’ union (association or guild) effectively represents students’ academic interests.

Students’ Union (Association or Guild)

  1. The Students’ Union (Association or Guild) has had a positive impact on my sense of belonging to the university or college.
  2. The Students’ Union (Association or Guild) has had a positive impact on the local community.
  3. The Students’ Union (Association or Guild) has helped me develop useful life skills.

Am I eligible?

In most cases, final year undergraduates are eligible to take the National Student Survey. If you are eligible, you will receive an email from Ipsos MORI during the week commencing 22 January 2018.

How your feedback makes a difference

Here are just some of the improvements we have made in response to student feedback:

Teaching and learning community

  • More teaching staff
    Since 2010, we have increased the number of teaching staff by 38%.
  • New teaching and learning spaces
    Over the last five years, we have invested £95.7m in teaching spaces. New spaces include: Sibson Building, Wigoder Law Building, Templeman Library redevelopment and the Sail and Colour Loft at Medway.
  • Free membership of your academic society
    You can join your academic society for free, if it is directly linked to your course.
  • Improved use of lecture capture
    A new lecture capture policy was developed with students and staff to make sure this helpful teaching tool is used more widely.
  • Networks for teaching staff
    We have created a network for Directors of Education to share best practice and help enhance teaching on your course.
  • More staff development
    We have enhanced continuing professional development opportunities for all teaching staff. Over the last three years, those with additional teaching qualifications have more than doubled.
Read more on teaching and learning

Learning opportunities

  • Even more study abroad opportunities
    Kent has expanded its range of study abroad opportunities with a network of over 200 universities across 39 countries.
  • Annual careers fair
    The careers fair gives you the opportunity to meet with hundreds of graduate employers offering not only jobs, but work experience and internships.
  • Year in Computing
    While studying at Kent you have the opportunity to develop your IT skills through our ‘Year in Computing’ course. If you don’t fancy Computing, there’s a range of Study Plus courses you can take alongside your main degree.
  • Award-winning careers service
    Our Careers and Employability Service is constantly listening to and acting on your feedback. This has helped them win Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Service (AGCAS) and National Undergraduate Employability (NUE) awards for the past three years.
Read more on learning opportunities

Assessment and feedback

  • Clear marking criteria in advance
    All marking criteria are in your module handbook so it’s easy to find and you know it in advance.
  • Standardised assessment and feedback
    Following feedback from almost 3,500 students, we worked with Kent Union to establish standardised assessment and feedback guidelines. View the Assessment and Feedback policy.
  • Timely feedback
    All assessments are now required to be marked and returned within three working weeks.
  • Sharing good practice
    Over 100 staff and students shared innovations in assessment and feedback at the Annual Learning and Teaching Conference in June.

Academic support

  • Academic Advisers for all
    Academic Advisers have been introduced to give you individual advice and guidance when you need it.
  • Study skills embedded in your course
    The Student Learning Advisory Service (SLAS) embeds study skills throughout the curriculum to help you get the study advice you need.
  • Book study support sessions online
    We launched an online booking system to make it easier for you to book one-to-one study advice and workshops.
Read more on academic and personal support

Organisation and management

  • Timetables on your phone
    We could see more of you were accessing your timetables on your phones so we made timetables mobile friendly.
  • Text messages for last-minute changes
    If there’s a last-minute room change or cancellation you will be texted.
  • Online module evaluation forms
    Module evaluations can now be completed online through Moodle. Making it easier for you to give your feedback!

Learning resources

  • Library redevelopment
    The Templeman Library redevelopment was designed with students. Requested features included more charging points and group work spaces.
  • More study spaces
    There have been over 500  additional study spaces created as part of the Templeman Library redevelopment. Offering even more silent, individual and group study options.
  • Better access to Wi-Fi
    We continue to improve our Wi-Fi network across the campus, inside and outside, plus within student accommodation.
  • Investment in course-specific resources
    £3.4m is spent annually on library resources relevant to study courses, including over 350,000 online titles.
Read more on learning resources

Student voice – how you can give your feedback

Other than the National Student Survey (NSS), there are many ways you can give your feedback while at Kent. You can tell us what you think by:

  • Talking to your Student Rep or using Digital Rep online
  • Completing a module evaluation to provide feedback (in class or online)
  • Speaking to your Academic Adviser or other members of staff (either face to face or via email)
  • Posting to the University’s social media (e.g. Twitter, Facebook etc.)
  • Completing other surveys you are sent throughout the year

A new group has been established to review core student surveys and ensure your feedback is being used to inform change. The group will also make sure you know about these changes through these webpages.

Corporate Communications - University of Kent

The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T: +44 (0)1227 764000