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Most overrated and underrated uni ranking stats? watch

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    I'll start.

    I think research impact is an overrated statistic. Uni applicants go absolutely crazy over this one and people often rank universities based on this stat alone. This stat has the obvious flaw of failing to take into account university size. It turns out that the higher universities are simply bigger and therefore have more research throughput. Research impact also has negligible impact on the quality of teaching at university. Some professors who are great researchers aren't great tutors, and vice versa. Research impact also doesn't influence the course structure, which is a critical topic for an applicant to consider.

    I think student satisfaction is an underrated statistic. Just a single mention of the term gets people turning their noses up and sneering at you. But university is a very difficult time, and stress, anxiety, and mental illnesses are common. It's important that a university has systems in place to help students through tough times, and that the university and the region it is in are enjoyable and active places to study for 3-4 years. If you don't enjoy your time at university then you won't achieve as high as you should, and you won't have the time of your life like university should be. You could just be spending the days, weeks, months, and years wishing it was over. Student satisfaction is in my opinion one of the most important stats to consider when applying to university. It factors in every aspect of university and is decided by the students - by people just like you.
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    Research and entry standards are the only metrics that should be considered, because you invariably find the historically best unis come out top on those metrics, but are often beaten by weaker universities on other metrics that are easy to manipulate like student satisfaction, which implies those metrics should not be relied upon
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    (Original post by Death Grips)
    Research and entry standards are the only metrics that should be considered, because you invariably find the historically best unis come out top on those metrics, but are often beaten by weaker universities on other metrics that are easy to manipulate like student satisfaction, which implies those metrics should not be relied upon
    I don't see how student satisfaction is less of an indicator of course quality than research...
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    (Original post by Keyhofi)
    I don't see how student satisfaction is less of an indicator of course quality than research...
    Really?


    The number of parties people at X uni have per week is just as good an indicator of course quality as the % of research that that faculty publishes that is 'world leading'? Really?
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    (Original post by sunni money)
    Really?


    The number of parties people at X uni have per week is just as good an indicator of course quality as the % of research that that faculty publishes that is 'world leading'? Really?
    Um, student satisfaction is a combination of how students rate the course, teaching, and uni services. The last time I checked the number of parties wasn't a question on the list.
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    I agree, i think student satisfaction is hugely important, but sadly i didnt think about this until i went to kcl and it has been terrible (despite it's great rankings in research...).
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    (Original post by sunni money)
    Really?


    The number of parties people at X uni have per week is just as good an indicator of course quality as the % of research that that faculty publishes that is 'world leading'? Really?
    I think that's a little bit narrow minded to say that student satisfaction relates only to the amount of parties. I've always taken it to mean how satisfied the students are with the university, the support networks put into place, the style of teaching, the facilities avaliable, etc.
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    (Original post by RainShift)
    I think that's a little bit narrow minded to say that student satisfaction relates only to the amount of parties. I've always taken it to mean how satisfied the students are with the university, the support networks put into place, the style of teaching, the facilities avaliable, etc.
    I have been trying to remember the questions we were asked to decide how satisfied we were with the course (I graduated last year). I remember there being five questions, but I can't recall what they were. I think it was something along the lines of teaching quality, feedback quality, assessment quality, uni services quality (such as the administration, library, and other facilities), and something else that I can't quite remember. I may be wrong though. Also not sure if the questions vary from uni to uni. Anything outside the course such as the city life wasn't included.
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    Ok. Let's take into consideration what the least educated people's views of what they think of what the most educated people are teaching them at a University. Great.
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    Research impact is important insofar that the universities with a higher impact impact also tend to be more respected universities by societies and employers.

    I agree student satisfaction should be taken more seriously though. I'm at LSE and I've lost count about the amount of miserable undergraduates who now see completing their degree as a means to an end rather than something to be enjoyed. But even if they had a 0% satisfaction rating they'd still be oversubscribed.
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    (Original post by Keyhofi)
    I have been trying to remember the questions we were asked to decide how satisfied we were with the course (I graduated last year). I remember there being five questions, but I can't recall what they were. I think it was something along the lines of teaching quality, feedback quality, assessment quality, uni services quality (such as the administration, library, and other facilities), and something else that I can't quite remember. I may be wrong though. Also not sure if the questions vary from uni to uni. Anything outside the course such as the city life wasn't included.
    The questions are here: https://www.ipsos-mori.com/Assets/Do...stionnaire.pdf

    Most league tables concentrate on the first sections (Guardian uses Teaching and A&F mean scores (with Q22 given 1/4 of the weighting of these), the Times give equal weighting to each section score (and look at % agree) and the Complete average the mean score answers to each question except learning resources (so heavier weighting for sections with more questions).

    full list
    The teaching on my course.
    1. Staff are good at explaining things
    2. Staff have made the subject interesting
    3. Staff are enthusiastic about what they are teaching
    4. The course is intellectually stimulating

    Assessment and feedback.
    5. The criteria used in marking have been clear in advance
    6. Assessment arrangements and marking have been fair
    7. Feedback on my work has been prompt
    8. I have received detailed comments on my work
    9. Feedback on my work has helped me clarify things I did not understand

    Academic support.
    10. I have received sufficient advice and support with my studies
    11. I have been able to contact staff when I needed to
    12. Good advice was available when I needed to make study choices

    Organisation and management.
    13. The timetable works efficiently as far as my activities are concerned
    14. Any changes in the course or teaching have been communicated effectively
    15. The course is well organised and is running smoothly

    Learning resources.
    16. The library resources and services are good enough for my needs
    17. I have been able to access general IT resources when I needed to
    18. I have been able to access specialised equipment, facilities, or rooms when I needed to

    Personal development.
    19. The course has helped me to present myself with confidence
    20. My communication skills have improved
    21. As a result of the course, I feel confident in tackling unfamiliar problems

    Overall satisfaction.
    22. Overall, I am satisfied with the quality of the course
 
 
 
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