Brighton medical students report high degree of satisfaction

Posted On 22 Aug 2011 at 12:37 am

Brighton students were among the most satisfied in the country, according to the latest annual National Student Survey.

At Brighton and Sussex Medical School, which is based in Falmer, 95 per cent of final year students said that they were satisfied overall with the quality of their course.

This was the most for any higher education institution in the UK this year and the second highest when further education colleges were counted.

Some 77 students responded out of 102 at the medical school, which is run jointly by Brighton University, Sussex University and Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust.

The satisfaction rating among the medical students was up from 85 per cent a year ago in the survey which was commissioned by the Higher Education Funding Council for England.

At Sussex 88 per cent said that they were satisfied overall with the quality of their course, down from 90 per cent a year ago.

Sussex was ranked joint 26th out of 157 UK higher education institutions and 22nd out of the 128 in England.

When further education colleges are counted, it came joint 42nd out 329, with 1,776 students out of 2,376 taking part in the survey.

Some 83 per cent of Brighton University final year undergraduates said that they were satisfied overall, up from 79 per cent a year ago, with 2,136 responding out of 3,304 students.

And at City College Brighton and Hove 77 per cent said that they were satisfied, with 82 out of 164 students responding to the survey.

Elsewhere locally 271 out of 340 students at Northbrook College in Worthing replied, with 79 per cent saying that they were satisfied with their course.

And 111 responded out of 155 at Sussex Downs College, in Lewes, with 71 per cent saying that they were satisfied overall.

The survey asked more than 20 questions apart from the one abut overall satisfaction, touching on teaching, feedback and support.

Professor Clare Mackie, the pro-vice-chancellor (teaching and learning) at Sussex, said: “With over 75 per cent of our final year students completing the survey, we can be confident that this is giving us a clear picture of Sussex’s areas of strength as well as areas where we can still improve.

“I am pleased that students rate their teaching so highly and judge that how we run their courses is very effective.”

“We will use all the scores and the open comments provided by our students in the survey to continue to improve and develop what we do at Sussex.”

At Sussex the detailed scores for each subject have been sent to the schools that make up the university.

They will share the results in detail with their staff and students in the autumn term.

The university said that all its schools had action plans in place to continue to improve the student experience and that these would be updated those in light of the survey results.

Professor Mackie said that the university’s scores for learning resources were disappointing but understandable, adding: “We had expected this score to suffer as we have been undertaking a complete £6 million refit of the library for the last 18 months while continuing to run it as a service.

“Many of the open comments reflect understandable dissatisfaction with the disruption this caused.

“That work is being completed this month and we are confident that the improved library services we offer will be welcomed by our students.

“This refurbishment has also had a knock-on effect on access to IT equipment this year but our IT scores more generally have not been as good as they could have been.

“We have invested in new IT infrastructure – such as the new £2 million machine room to improve the robustness of our services – and we are also now improving wifi and 3G on campus.”

* Separately, Sussex University has again been named as one of the world’s top 150 universities.

The 2011 Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), published by the Center for World-Class Universities and the Institute of Higher Education of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, puts Sussex in the top 150 globally, and jointly 11th in the UK.

Sussex vice-chancellor Professor Michael Farthing said: “Sussex is consistently ranked among the best universities in the world.

“We will continue to look at ways in which we can further develop our global reputation as a centre for research excellence and as an institution that welcomes talented students from around the world.”

The rankings are in their seventh year and measure, among other things, the number of alumni and staff winning Nobel Prizes.

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