The University of Twente continues to show an upward trend in students’ appreciation in the National Student Survey (NSE). The results of the newest edition of the large nationwide satisfaction survey amongst higher vocational training (HBO) and university students were announced recently.
An upward trend
The average score of UT has risen from 4.08 to 4.10 points (on a scale of 1 to 5), which contrasts with a nationwide drop in appreciation averaging 0.03 points (from 4.08 to 4.05). Only two universities improved their score; the other scores remained the same or dropped slightly. In terms of appreciation this puts UT in fourth place nationally, up from seventh last year.
The upward trend of UT has been visible for a few years now. Since 2014 the score for ‘your study in general’ rose from 3.89 to 4.10. Evaluation of the atmosphere rose from 4.22 to 4.36, and on the question of whether students would recommend their programme to friends, families, or colleagues scores rose from 4.05 to 4.23.
In the NSE, students evaluate more than 18 different aspects of their studies: Group size (4.20), Internship experience (4.14), General skills (4.02), and Academic timetable (4.01) were the highest-scoring of all 18 topics.
“Within the Twente Educational Model we focus specifically on the development of knowledge and skills that fit with current practice in the professional field our students will be part of later on,” says Rector Magnificus Thom Palstra. “It is good to see the above-average appreciation that students have for practical orientation, collaboration with others, and problem-solving skills. These are aspects that we pay a great deal of attention to.”
On 17 out of 18 themes an increase can be seen compared to last year. The largest progression was achieved in the aspects of Internship experience (+0.12 to 4.14), Internationalisation (+0.11 to 3.48), Quality care (+0.09 to 3.67), and Academic guidance (+0.09 to 3.87) .
“There is a great willingness amongst students to give us their opinion about their programme,” says Palstra. “About 4,000 students participated in the survey, placing our response rate above the national average. This large response helps us do our best to address preferences, demands, and expectations as we continue to develop our programmes.”
In the coming period the results per programme will be further processed by the staff of the different programmes. This will result in renewed identification of priorities as well as potential improvements. Palstra: “The staff deserve a big compliment for the way they have succeeded in maintaining the upward trend. They not only look at numbers, but also talk to the students in order to understand the underlying criticism and implement improvements.’
About the NSE
The National Student Survey is taken yearly amongst HBO and university students. In addition to improving education, the results of the NSE are also used by other parties, like the academic consumer guides Keuzegids and Elsevier Beste Studies.