University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Shortbread and Sticky Notes: Taking a Personal Approach to Student Experience at University of Worcester Library Services

George, Madalene (2017) Shortbread and Sticky Notes: Taking a Personal Approach to Student Experience at University of Worcester Library Services. In: Gregynog Colloquium, 12th-16th June 2017, Gregynog Hall, Newtown. (Unpublished)

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With the landscape of Higher Education evolving rapidly, the results of the National Student Survey (NSS) playing a progressively prominent role in the assessment of institutional success and an ever-increasing student focus on value for money, how do we plan for, and respond to, the feedback received from our students? At University of Worcester Library Services we have put student voice at the heart of our development and taken a proactive approach to improving student experience. In this presentation, I will share our experience of using the NSS, combined with a more personal and targeted project approach, to engage with even ‘hard to reach’ student groups and improve student experience for all.
Despite receiving our highest NSS score to date in 2015/16, Library Services were keenly aware that we simply did not score so highly with certain student groups and that, to understand this dip in student satisfaction, we would need to adopt an approach that contrasted with the mass-targeting campaigns of the NSS and other university-wide surveys.
By personally targeting students from individual subject areas and inviting them to attend small, informal focus groups (with an abundance of sticky notes and the obligatory biscuits), we were able to glean a vast amount of information regarding both course-specific and more general student concerns and identify a number of gaps in student knowledge. These focus groups provided us with invaluable opportunities to reach out to individual student groups and gather information that fed directly into staff and student-facing campaigns and, to complete the feedback loop, we ensured that we kept in touch with participants, including them as recipients of the project report and Library Services’ proposed outcomes. In the longer term, it is hoped that the impact of this project will be measurable through improved 2016/17 NSS scores from targeted student groups but, also, through an overall increase in student satisfaction and engagement with Library Services.
This presentation will explore this project as a model of engaging with student experience that is simple yet highly effective and, since it requires no specialist resources or staff, one that can be replicated by delegates from a broad range of institutions.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
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Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: student experience, feedback, focus groups, National Student Survey, NSS, Higher Education, Library Servces, University of Worcester, student satisfaction
Subjects: A General Works > AS Academies and learned societies (General)
Divisions: Central Services > Library Services
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Depositing User: Madalene George
Date Deposited: 16 Jan 2018 10:25
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2020 17:20

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