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Learning and Teaching

Student Views

Annual experience survey and mid module reviews

Students’ feedback on their experience is a central component of our evaluation of learning, teaching and assessment at York St John.

We ask students to provide specific feedback on their experience at programme and module level so that we can work in ongoing partnership with students to improve course delivery and wider experience.

Mid-module evaluation

Mid-module evaluations focus on the current strengths of a module, and aspects of a module liable to immediate change and improvement.

They are conducted at or around week 6, or half-way through taught provision, decisions about the nature and format of mid-module evaluation are made at School level.

YSJ Experience Survey (YES)

Our YSJ Experience Survey is for foundation, first and second year undergraduates, degree apprentices and students on professional placements.

It focuses on ways in which we can continuously improve students’ engagement, learning experiences, and success. The survey results form part of our institutional approach to working with students as partners in the assurance and enhancement of their educational experience, as outlined in the UK Quality Code Advice and Guidance: Monitoring and Evaluation, and Student Engagement.

The survey enables students to provide specific feedback on their experience of the academic year.

The 2024 YES opens on 29 January and runs until 15 March. 

Students can complete the YES online via this link: https://app.onlinesurveys.jisc.ac.uk/s/yorksj/york-st-john-experience-survey-2024 

The National Student Survey (NSS)

The NSS is the largest UK wide annual survey aimed at final year undergraduates in the UK. The survey provides students with an opportunity to give honest opinions on what they liked about their course at York St John University as well as things that could have been improved. The survey is administered by Ipsos MORI, an independent market research agency on behalf of the UK Higher Education funding and regulatory bodies, so responses remain anonymous from York St John University.

The 2024 NSS runs from 6 January to 30 April.

Students can complete the NSS online via this link: https://www.thestudentsurvey.com/ 

Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES) 

The PTES is the only UK higher education sector-wide survey to gain insight from taught postgraduate students about their learning and teaching experience.

PTES is run by AdvanceHE, the sector-owned higher education charity which accredits our HEA Fellowship schemes. 

The responses we receive from the PTES will provide us with valuable insights into the experience of postgraduate taught students at York St John. This will enhance the information we get from ongoing mid-module evaluations and our iterative patterns of dialogue with our students. 

Postgraduate Research Experience Survey (PRES)

The PRES is a national survey of postgraduate research students which invites you to comment on your programme and experience.

PRES is also run by AdvanceHE, a member-led, sector-owned charity that works with institutions and higher education across the world to improve higher education for staff, students and society. The survey has been developed in consultation with the sector and has been robustly tested across many disciplines, in several institutions and with students to ensure it produces valid results. 

Postgraduate researchers are asked a range of standard questions about their postgraduate research experience, including their motivations for postgraduate study, experiences of supervision, resources, research community, progress and assessment, skills and professional development, as well as their wellbeing. Responses are anonymous.

For queries about any of our student surveys, please contact surveys@yorksj.ac.uk.

How we manage our surveys

Our student survey activity is carefully managed under the terms of our Student Partnership Plus Policy (PDF, 0.1 MB).

Our Student Partnership Plus Steering Group (SPPSG) makes sure that a joined up approach is taken to planning all partnership activities including surveys. SPPSG is sponsored by the Pro Vice Chancellor Education and co-chaired by the SU President of Education and the Head of Teaching and Learning Enhancement. It has representatives from across our schools, directorates and the Students' Union. A Surveys Working Group guarantees operational planning and coordination running our annual student surveys.

How we use student feedback

This feedback provides an evidence-base for School Academic Leadership Teams to reflect on the design and delivery of modules and gauge the success of programmes in meeting their aims and objectives. Feedback and actions will feed into the Subject Annual Monitoring Report process.

Unconscious bias

Students are reminded that their evaluation of teaching may be influenced by unconscious and unintentional biases about personal characteristics of staff such as accent, age, disability, gender, race and ethnicity, and sexuality. For example, research shows that women and Black, Asian and minority ethnic staff are often rated lower in their teaching evaluations than men and white staff, even when there are no actual differences in the teaching or in what students have learned.

We ask students to keep this in mind as they fill out surveys and make an effort to resist stereotypes about lecturers. We suggest they focus on opinions of the course (e.g. how well you understood the material, the content of the module, how well you think it was taught) and not unrelated matters (e.g. the lecturer's characteristics).

Data protection

Information on how we collect, use, store and share data during student surveys can be found on our Survey Privacy Notice page.

Survey Privacy Notice

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