Student satisfaction at Welsh universities is above UK average

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Cardiff University. Photo by Stan Zurek. Bangor University. Photo: Denis Egan. Swansea University photo by SwanseaUni. (CC BY-SA 4.0) Aberystwyth University photo by Tanya Dedyukhina (CC BY 3.0).

Student satisfaction at universities in Wales is above the UK average, according to new figures.

Results from this year’s National Student Survey (NSS) released today show an increase in student satisfaction with their college courses.

76.8% in Wales were satisfied with their course, compared to 76.0% in England. The satisfaction rate in the UK was 76.3%.

Satisfaction across the UK continued to lag pre-pandemic levels, however. Overall satisfaction in Wales had peaked at 85.3% in 2019 before falling sharply to 76.1% in 2021, with a slight rebound this year.

Students responding to the survey this year would have had their three years at university impacted by the Covid pandemic, which emerged at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year.

Universities across the UK continue to teach both online and in person due to the impact of the Covid pandemic.

Overall student satisfaction at Aberystwyth was 86.97%, Bangor University was 80.55%, Swansea 78.33%, Wrexham 76.64%, Trinity St David 75.72%, University of Cardiff 75.57% and the University of South Wales 74.80%.

‘Work hard’

Susan Lapworth, Acting Chief Executive of the Office for Students, said: “This year’s graduates have been hardest hit by the pandemic, with much of their time at university impacted by closures and other restrictions on student life.

“NSS has played an important role in capturing student perspectives during this extraordinarily difficult time for students and university staff.”

She said the 2022 results show “there is still a long way to go if student opinion of their course quality is to improve to pre-pandemic levels.”

She added: “Universities and colleges have – on the whole – worked hard to return to in-person teaching and to ensure that students have access to the facilities they need to succeed in their studies.

“It is therefore welcome to see a marked increase in the proportion of students who agree that the resources offered by universities and colleges are adequate. But on this measure, and all of them, there are substantial differences in student opinions depending on the subject they study.

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