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Continued improvement in student experience at Birkbeck: Part-time students are the most satisfied overall in London

Birkbeck is ranked first in London by part-time students for teaching and overall satisfaction, according to the National Student Survey published on Thursday 15 July.

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In a tough year, when student satisfaction has dipped across the sector, significant gains made in national rankings for students’ overall satisfaction and their experience of teaching and learning made in 2020, have been maintained. Birkbeck made a substantial investment in infrastructure, staffing support and training for academic staff early in the pandemic. This meant our courses were ready for online learning in the autumn.

The College has also improved its position across the higher education sector in key survey areas and where Birkbeck invested in improving the student experience. Students rank it considerably better than the sector average for its teaching and for the way in which it conducts assessments and feedback. It has also substantially improved against the sector in terms of the academic support it provides, its learning resources and student voice – the way students are listened to, and their feedback is taken on board.

A broad range of Birkbeck’s courses do well in comparison with other multi-faculty universities across the country against key metrics and our psychology, business and management, history of art and computer science courses are all among the top 10 in the country for the academic support and assessment and feedback provided.

At the subject level, Birkbeck achieved some outstanding results: 100% of respondents who studied mathematics and 93% who studied politics rated them as intellectually stimulating and 90% of students studying psychology rated their teaching positively.

Professor Diane Houston, Pro Vice-Chancellor Education said: “I am really pleased that we have maintained the considerable improvements that we have made to student satisfaction at Birkbeck over the past two years.

 “In 2019 we invested significantly in redesigning our courses and supporting materials for the virtual environment, creating a library of digital textbooks, and offering training and development opportunities to all our staff to support online delivery during the pandemic. We know from our internal surveys that students have welcomed our approach to learning and we are planning to combine in-person teaching with the very best elements of virtual learning from next academic year.

“We recognise that there will always be areas in which we can improve and will continue to work to secure further improvements in student satisfaction.”

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