Module evaluation

Module Feedback Surveys

Module feedback surveys are one of the ways we gather student feedback and improve the student experience. See the other ways students can get involved.

Module feedback surveys take place towards the end of every taught module in the University and give students the opportunity to reflect on their experience of the module and contribute their thoughts on what worked well and where enhancements could be considered for future iterations of the module.

We encourage students to discuss issues and provide feedback throughout a module, so the teaching team are aware of issues as they arise. Students can speak directly to the teaching team or through their module representative, details of whom will be on the Canvas module space.

The system used by the University

The University has used the EvaSys system since 2015. It is software which issues electronic surveys and collates results for us. Staff guidance on the system and process is available through the Staff Module Evaluation Resources SharePoint site.

How the survey process works - closing the feedback loop

It is important that our students provide feedback on their experience and our teaching staff reflect on the feedback, share their reflections with students and act as relevant, to enhance our modules and student experience.

In practice, the process is:

  1. All module surveys are issued to all students across all modules for 14 days at the end of teaching.
  2. Students receive an e-mail alerting them to complete the survey and they can do so via Canvas; the University App or by following the provided URL.
  3. Students will receive a reminder giving details of all their surveys outstanding during the survey period.
  4. On surveys closing, the student will receive an automatic e-mail thanking them for their responses.
  5. The module coordinator will receive a notification to review the quantitative and qualitative feedback, which can be found on the portal; using their University login details to log in.
  6. The module coordinator will be asked to consider, and respond to, a short set of reflective questions. These are:
    1. “Areas of good practice you identified through the evaluation were:”
    2. “Areas for the development you identified through the evaluation were:”
    3. “As a result of your feedback, we will take the following actions:”
    4. “Any further comments on the feedback:” 

The module coordinator will share their reflections with their students within 14 days of the close of the survey. They are not obliged to respond in detail to all comments raised.

Actions identified by the module coordinator will be implemented for subsequent module iterations.

What questions students will be asked

Students will be asked a range of questions on their experience of the module. The questions cover their overall satisfaction; their experience of teaching on the module; learning opportunities; assessment and feedback; academic support; organisation and management; learning resources; learning community; employability, placement; open comments. Most require a “tick box” answer indicating agreement with statements made and there is space at the end for some open comments.

Read the constructive feedback guidance.

Responses

Response rate

We strongly encourage students to respond, as this is the key route for them to improve the student experience for themselves and others. Whether a student responds or not, it will not affect their marks in any way. We are aiming for a response rate of over 50%.

Withdrawal of responses

The system does not allow responses to be withdrawn once submitted, so students should take care with initial responses. If there are exceptional circumstances, contact us by email.

Anonymity of module survey responses

So long as the student does not include anything in the open questions that makes them identifiable, no one in the faculty will know who gave which answers. This includes staff who teach and mark on the module. Centrally, the system can track who has responded so that reminders are not duplicated, and high-level analysis can take place. The results of this analysis will be presented in a way that does not identify any individual.

However, the University reserves the right to identify a respondent under certain circumstances, i.e., where they suspect a breach of the law or University policy and regulation or a threat to the welfare of a student, staff, or another.

Where less than three students have responded to the survey on a module. Their responses will not be shared to avoid anonymity being breached.

The impact of unconscious/conscious bias on feedback responses?

From evidence in the sector, it is understood that comments are subjective and can discriminate against staff from certain demographic groups through the effect of conscious or unconscious bias.

Unconscious bias refers to stereotypes and prejudices held at an unconscious level. We all have them and sometimes we do not realise what they are, but they can influence how we respond through survey feedback.

Being aware of our own biases is the first step to avoiding them influencing our views and feedback. For example, students should reflect on how their rating would change if they disregarded the sex, age, race, disability of their teachers? Students should reflect their experience of the module and not focus on individuals. Responses from both students and staff should be respectful to their audience.

Think before you click!

The university response to the risk of conscious and unconscious bias in module surveys

Guidance, such as this webpage, the survey, and the communications to students, is designed to encourage students to be respectful and constructive in their feedback. In extreme cases, we will also take sanctions against those who overstep the mark. Read about the University approach to promoting equality and diversity. Our approach to respect at work and study is set out in our policies and guidance pages.

Use of survey results

As well as informing enhancement locally, senior colleagues in the faculty and central services have access to module survey responses and to staff reflections. The reports are used as management information, to inform enhancement and decision making.

Data protection and privacy

The module survey is an online survey using EvaSys and any information entered will be stored securely within the UK. By taking part in the survey, students are consenting to any information that they provide being stored in this way. More information on their rights can be found in our Student Privacy Notice. If students have any questions about the survey, please contact us by email.