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Our finalists have their say in the National Student Survey

NSS results 2018

83% of final year students are satisfied with the University of Reading, according to the 2018 National Student Survey (NSS) published today (Friday 27 July).

Each year, the NSS provides us with the most comprehensive, independent and full picture of what our final year students think about their time at Reading – what works here and what needs to improve. The 2018 NSS was completed by 2,145 final-year students, representing the views of 66% of eligible finalists. 

Our finalists’ overall satisfaction remains consistent with the sector average, which is also 83% according to these latest results and remains steady with last year’s result of 84%.

Finalists commended teaching staff for being good at explaining things (88%) and a further 85% said that the course was intellectually stimulating. 

High levels of student satisfaction were also reported  at discipline level, with seven areas achieving a score of 90% or above: Meteorology (100%); French (95%); Geography & Environmental Science (90%); Built Environment (91%); Archaeology (90%); English Language & Applied Linguistics 90%); and Film, Theatre & Television (90%).

The fact that our students continue to reflect positively on their overall experience of studying here is a huge testament to the hard work of staff across the University. The results provide an opportunity for us to reflect on these achievements as well as helping to understand where we can make improvements. 

Sir David Bell KCB, Vice-Chancellor, said:

“I am extremely grateful to all those who took the time to complete the NSS, and our other important student surveys. While we are pleased that our overall student satisfaction remains strong in what has been a challenging year for higher education, the results highlight several areas for improvement. Students are right to have high expectations of their university and survey feedback is very valuable to help us identify where we need to take action. 

“Feedback from the NSS in previous years has influenced many current projects that will enhance the experience of current and future students. For example, our ambitious capital investment programme 2026: TRANSFORM will improve vital facilities such as study space and teaching and learning resources. This year’s results reflect that the works necessary to deliver such projects do cause inconvenience for current students in the interim, so we are committed to mitigating the disruption as far as we can.

“We are also planning big improvements to assessment and feedback. Our Electronic Management of Assessment Programme will enable more timely submission and more consistent, clear online feedback. Following a successful pilot in a number of Schools this year, we are introducing these new processes more widely for the 2018/19 academic year.

“We will be analysing the NSS feedback carefully to see what other things we can do to make Reading even better.”

We would like to thank staff across the institution for their valuable support in promoting the NSS and other important surveys to eligible students, resulting in a 5% increase in NSS student responses this year. 

The full results are publically available on the Office for Students website

Next steps

Data from the NSS and other recent student surveys, including the UK Engagement Survey (UKES), will be analysed in detail and shared with Schools, departments and functions. The results will be considered by relevant University committees to identify common themes and areas for improvement. We will keep staff and students updated with progress and hope to demonstrate clear steps taken to act on this feedback.  

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