Official statistic

Key performance measure 4

Students’ views on aspects of quality

KPM 4 measures the percentage of students responding positively to questions about aspects of the quality of their academic experience.

Percentage of undergraduate students responding positively to National Student Survey (NSS) questions about aspects of quality

One of our strategic goals is that students receive a high quality academic experience that improves their knowledge and skills, with increasing numbers receiving excellent provision.

KPM 4 presents data from the National Student Survey (NSS) which relates to student views on the quality of their academic experience.

If our interventions to meet our strategic goal on quality have the desired effect, we would expect more students to report positively about these aspects of their experience. The indicators in KPM 4 should therefore increase.

KPM 4 shows the percentage of students who responded positively to NSS questions about:

  • the teaching on their course
  • assessment and feedback
  • academic support
  • learning resources
  • student voice.

In 2023 there were changes made to the National Student Survey (NSS). Some questions changed, and a four-point response scale was used instead of a five-point one, meaning there was no longer a ‘neutral’ response option.

Results from 2023 are shown separately as they should not be directly compared. In particular, the removal of the ‘neutral’ response option in 2023 means that we would expect more students to respond positively to the new survey, regardless of any change in the student experience.

While the five theme measures used for the 2023 results have the same titles as the earlier theme measures, for the 2023 data they are published as experimental statistics. This means there is not enough evidence to be sure that they are the best way of summarising the NSS results. Therefore, these theme measures are subject to change in the future.

In the 2023 NSS, on questions about the teaching on their course, 84.7 per cent of students responded positively. On questions about assessment and feedback, 78.0 per cent of responded positively. On questions about academic support, 83.4 per cent responded positively. On questions about learning resources, 86.1 per cent responded positively. Finally, on questions about student voice 71.9 per cent responded positively.

The NSS surveys undergraduate students in their final academic year. The 2023 NSS achieved a 71.3 per cent response rate in England, with 290,706 students taking part in the survey.

The positivity measure shows the percentage of respondents at English higher education providers registered with the OfS, who gave a positive answer to five theme measures in the NSS: the teaching on my course; assessment and feedback; academic support; learning resources; and student voice (excluding question 25). The positive answers are the first two possible answers to the question.

The theme measures are positivity measures calculated for groups of questions. For example, the theme measure for ‘teaching on my course summarises into a single value the positive responses to all four of the questions within this theme. For more information on how theme measures are calculated, see ‘How do you calculate theme measures’ in About the NSS data.

Contact us

If you have any queries, feedback or suggestions about KPM 4, please contact Mark Gittoes at [email protected].

Published 08 September 2022
Last updated 09 October 2023
09 October 2023
Updated with NSS 2023 data.

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