Semester 1, 2009 Student Feedback on Courses: 
A Summary of Your Comments

In semester 1 you gave us over 40,000 comments about your courses - thank you! You told us about the many things that we are doing well, as well as a number of suggestions for where we can make improvements.

In general you like your teachers, you see relevance and value in the courses you take, and prefer assessments that actively engage you in learning. You generally think your courses are well resourced, and that you are well supported with your study. We are listening to where you think we need to make changes and will regularly report back to you on the actions we are taking.

What did you tell us?

The teaching qualities which you most appreciate and which you believe most assist you to learn include:
  • organisation
  • an engaging teaching style
  •  interactivity
  • providing challenge
  • subject expertise
  • clarity in the presentation of information
  • approachability and manner
  • accessibility within and outside of lectures/tutorials
  • concern for student welfare and learning
  • passion for the subject and for teaching
  • feedback to students about their learning and progress

You commented favourably when assessments:

  • were scaffolded in terms of difficulty, and therefore developmental
  • provide genuine and enjoyable learning experiences
  • are valid, that is related to the learning outcomes of the course being studied
  • had clear requirements and criteria
  • were carefully designed to support learning and the delivery of the curriculum
  • provided formative and summative feedback

Courses that you think are well designed provide:

  • flexibility
  • opportunity to apply learning
  • relevance to learning/career goals
  • integrated and managed elearning (Blackboard/Lectopia)
  • logical delivery of curriculum
  • integration between lectures, tutorials and laboratories

How are we responding to your feedback?

In response to your feedback we will be:

  • working to ensure all teachers deliver in engaging, interactive and interesting ways
  • making sure that passionate and knowledgeable people teach you
  • ensuring that your lecturers are well prepared and their lectures are well planned
  • ensuring that you receive ongoing feedback and advice about your learning

We will also: 

  • make sure lectures, tutorials, laboratories, workshops, and other classes are integrated within your course
  • relate your learning to real world situations, and to contexts relevant to your Program and your personal study and career goals wherever possible
  • provide you with applied learning and assessment experiences wherever practical
  • provide flexibility by offering you choices and alternative learning methods, such as Blackboard and Lectopia
  • ensure that what you are learning is always cognisant of current trends and practices
  • make sure that we design your learning in ways that keep you enthusiastic, engaged and confident

and we shall:

  • use assessment methods that are valid, reliable and relevant to the subject you are studying
  • make sure assessments are positive and useful learning experiences, and that you are able to integrate them with your other learning activities wherever possible
  • ensure that assessments are always fair, that they are weighted correctly, and that they are marked consistently and impartially
  • ensure that you know our expectations of you

Summary reports for each course in Semester 1 have been prepared for Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Heads of School. Staff in the Centre for Teaching and Learning are working with academic staff to help address some of the issues you have raised and ensure we are continuously improving our courses.

We will be asking for your feedback on your Semester 2 courses remember that your comments are of great value to us, so please complete the surveys when you receive the email invitation.

If you want anymore information about the sorts of things we are doing to address your suggestions, or would like to talk to us about your comments, or if you have any ideas about improvements we could make, please contact the Planning, Quality and Reporting Team: email surveys@newcastle.edu.au