The annual NSS event organised by Ipsos MORI was attended by academics and institutional practitioners from North West universities who are involved in the survey, representatives from HEFCE, Ipsos MORI and external speakers.
News from HEFCE/Ipsos MORI:
NSS 2016 will be ‘business as usual’, although piloting of new NSS 2017 questionnaire will continue
After introducing new NSS publication threshold (10 responses) 90% of courses have their data published on the UNISTATS (up from 86%)
HEFCE are considering collecting NSS data from students who changed courses and/or planning to withdraw (after 2017 – subject to consultation outcomes)
Decision on publication of student comments will also be made based on outcomes of the consultation on the NSS and UNISTATS.
Penny Haughan, Dean of Students, Liverpool Hope University:
Liverpool Hope is best improved North West University (89% satisfaction in 2015, up from 82% in 2014)
Strategies they used: NSS is a part of a bigger picture (course evaluation, First Destination data, retention/progression figures are taken into account when developing action plans). Not only academic staff, but Student Service departments and Programme Administrators are involved in the discussion of NSS results.
Keep telling students what have been changed as result of their feedback: e.g. they created apps ‘Find where is a free computer’ and ‘Ask Librarian (for resource queries’)
Luke Windsor, Pro-Dean Education, University of Leeds:
Leeds also improved their satisfaction score in 2015 (90%, up from 87%).
Strategies they used: Students are actively involved in developing NSS action plans (not just commenting on staff plans). This is very much a ‘shared endeavour’. Leeds Partnership (partnership of the University and Student Union) plays important role in the process.
Luke was talking about ‘problematic’ sides of the NSS as well – e.g. decreasing diversity of practice, difficulty of sustain detailed level of attention (NSS fatigue), cohorts’ variability, ‘ and transitional effects on the NSS results.
Jo Frankham, LJMU
Jo presented outcomes of her research: The National Student Survey: How it affects academics https://www.bera.ac.uk/blog/much-ado-about-something-the-effects-of-the-national-student-survey-on-higher-education. It generated a lively discussion.