Durham 11th for Student Satisfaction
THIS YEAR’S NATIONAL Student Survey (NSS) has placed Durham University eleventh in the UK in terms of overall student satisfaction.
The NSS, which has taken place annually since 2005, surveyed the opinions of 210,000 students from 148 institutions across the country. Students, most of them in their final year, were asked to rate their experience of teaching, assessment and feedback, academic support, organisation and management, learning resources, personal development and overall satisfaction.
Durham was ranked top in the UK for overall satisfaction in three subject areas – theology, combined arts and combined social sciences. A further three subjects – physics, engineering and natural sciences – were also ranked in the top five nationally.
Over the whole University, 89 per cent of respondents said they were satisfied with the quality of their course, just above the national average of 83 per cent.
Durham has also been praised for its high quality research and teaching, having been ranked sixth and eighth in university league tables by The Independent and The Times respectively.
DSU Education and Welfare Officer, Emma Carter, said, “The high standards of the University are reflected in the NSS results. The University is extremely good at providing for, supporting and representing students, academically, socially and pastorally.”
The level of student satisfaction was reflected in a survey of University staff. In this review, 92 per cent of respondents agreed that, generally, they enjoy their work.
However, concerns have been raised in a number of areas, including tuition fees, a lack of contact time and shortcomings in the college pastoral system. Although a high level of communication does exist between student representatives and the University, there remain questions over how responsive the University is to student needs.
Vice Chancellor, Professor Chris Higgins, conceded, “There is still some way to go before we are in the position we should be as a University which prides itself on the education and experience it provides to students.”