Why is student satisfaction at King's so low

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Edulcorante
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The consistently low score for student satisfaction at King's really worries me.

It's third from bottom on the Complete University Guide: http://www.thecompleteuniversityguid...t+Satisfaction

What are the reasons for this?
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RachaelBee
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The only thing I'm unhappy with is the quality of teaching, the content is great, it's super interesting and the course is full on but I like that. Apparently I hit the nail on the head thought when I said I felt like teaching was an inconvenience to a lot of the lecturers. There seems to be this idea in higher ranking universities that the students should be able to do a lot of stuff for themselves, and we can, but I sometimes feel like the support is lacking. For example, I did a practical yesterday and the demonstrator tried to walk out on me even though there was something obviously wrong with my results calculations and she seemed to think "well I don't know what you've done" was an acceptable answer; I refused to let her leave, forced her to work back through my results with me and it turned out there should have been a conversion so my results were out by a factor of 100. We got to the bottom of it within a couple of minutes and it was a super easy problem to fix, but it wasn't in the notes or anything and I'd literally have had no other way of knowing what I'd done wrong if she'd walked out.

In universities that are very research focused a lot of the staff don't WANT to be teaching; their research is what they want to do, teaching alongside it is more of a necessary evil. That's not to say that all of the lecturers are bad, but comparing KCL to Greenwich I can honestly say that at Greenwich I had a few bad lecturers, where as at KCL I have a few good ones.

ETA: I also think the type of students that certain universities attract plays a big part in satisfaction too. A lot of high schools really spoon feed you at A level compared to if you do A levels at college; sixth forms tend to have fewer students and more resources which often results in better grades and people going to better universities. Colleges don't do that and expect a lot more independent study which means it's less of a culture shock for those who go to uni and it's good in the long run, but doesn't always translate to great grades at A level. A lot of people on my course were stressing about things which it is not up to the uni to do. It's hard to be patient sometimes because I want to say to people "you're not at school, you have to do some independent study" and people equate that to bad teaching/dissatisfaction.
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aplaceforflowers
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(Original post by RachaelBee)
The only thing I'm unhappy with is the quality of teaching, the content is great, it's super interesting and the course is full on but I like that. Apparently I hit the nail on the head thought when I said I felt like teaching was an inconvenience to a lot of the lecturers. There seems to be this idea in higher ranking universities that the students should be able to do a lot of stuff for themselves, and we can, but I sometimes feel like the support is lacking. For example, I did a practical yesterday and the demonstrator tried to walk out on me even though there was something obviously wrong with my results calculations and she seemed to think "well I don't know what you've done" was an acceptable answer; I refused to let her leave, forced her to work back through my results with me and it turned out there should have been a conversion so my results were out by a factor of 100. We got to the bottom of it within a couple of minutes and it was a super easy problem to fix, but it wasn't in the notes or anything and I'd literally have had no other way of knowing what I'd done wrong if she'd walked out.

In universities that are very research focused a lot of the staff don't WANT to be teaching; their research is what they want to do, teaching alongside it is more of a necessary evil. That's not to say that all of the lecturers are bad, but comparing KCL to Greenwich I can honestly say that at Greenwich I had a few bad lecturers, where as at KCL I have a few good ones.

ETA: I also think the type of students that certain universities attract plays a big part in satisfaction too. A lot of high schools really spoon feed you at A level compared to if you do A levels at college; sixth forms tend to have fewer students and more resources which often results in better grades and people going to better universities. Colleges don't do that and expect a lot more independent study which means it's less of a culture shock for those who go to uni and it's good in the long run, but doesn't always translate to great grades at A level. A lot of people on my course were stressing about things which it is not up to the uni to do. It's hard to be patient sometimes because I want to say to people "you're not at school, you have to do some independent study" and people equate that to bad teaching/dissatisfaction.
Agree with all of this.
I would add that another reason for low student satisfaction might be the totally rubbish bureaucracy at King's. The administrators in many departments are worse than useless, and there are often problems with work not being accessible online, lecture notes vanishing, KEATS playing up, or just a shutdown of the whole system as happened a couple of weeks ago, which meant thousands of stressed students trying to submit coursework. For a top university, smooth service and solid online systems are important, and King's is severely lacking.
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Bobjim12
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Because a lot of it sucks. And it's expensive to live in London which a lot of people don't understand and so put that against it.

There are far too many problems with KCL, outdated facilities, for my course anyway. Issues that take ages to be resolved, and IT outages which seem to last for a month at a time.

But KCL are aware of their reputation, so know that students will put up with it.

They are going to have 4 new buildings with brand new facilities inside (Aldwych quarter) so hopefully that improves things.
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Edulcorante
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Thank you for the replies. My feeling was that living in London was the main issue but your replies have given me food for thought.
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DarkEnergy
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(Original post by Edulcorante)
Thank you for the replies. My feeling was that living in London was the main issue but your replies have given me food for thought.
Give me an example course and I'll find out exactly why.
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2384911
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I've heard from some of my old friends that a lot of the lecturers at KCL seem to think of lecturing as a burden and will walk out of lectures as early as possible.
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Edulcorante
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DarkEnergy: I'm particularly interested in English Lit.
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DarkEnergy
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(Original post by Edulcorante)
DarkEnergy: I'm particularly interested in English Lit.
I couldn't find an exact English Lit course, so I looked up the data for "BA English".

This course actually has a high overall student satisfaction, at 91%. Its downfalls come down to feedback mainly.
You can see this here: https://unistats.direct.gov.uk/Subje...eturnTo/Search
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Hippysnake
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Because it's not ucl.
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Edulcorante
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(Original post by DarkEnergy)
I couldn't find an exact English Lit course, so I looked up the data for "BA English".

This course actually has a high overall student satisfaction, at 91%. Its downfalls come down to feedback mainly.
You can see this here: https://unistats.direct.gov.uk/Subje...eturnTo/Search
Thanks for that. I have a feeling I'm going to spend quite a while looking round that site!
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Edulcorante
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(Original post by Hippysnake)
Because it's not ucl.



Haha, I've heard about that stereotype as well.
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RachaelBee
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(Original post by meridian0)
how do all the printers at a university stop working at once? it's absurd lol
How could I not find a single free computer at Guy's campus? xD I'm so far behind on stuff thanks to illness, my internet stopped streaming so lecture capture was a no go and then all the computer rooms were booked at the same damn time!
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mrkl
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Obviously because students are demanding value for their money (estimated @ 40k including interest ) and they are not happy with what they got. Simple as that.
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evabrook
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Hmmm
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AKingsScholar
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Yep would echo everything that’s been said, students treated as a nuisance whereas they’re supported and sometimes involved in the research at other universities.

The most inefficient bureaucratic organisation going. If you suggest anything to improve it you’re told, next year. Guess what last year’s students were told?

Very poor value for what you’re paying, playing off prestige and delivering a very bad service. The basic university things King’s doesn’t to seem to be able to do well. The whole organisation feels rather than working with you it’s working against. Emails regularly ignored, non transparent, non-accessible staff.
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