Student survey

Student Survey

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Just like an organization requires its employee’s feedback and opinion on its functioning. In the education field, student’s perspectives on the operation of Universities and Schools also hold importance.

A student survey is a method of obtaining the opinion of the students about the curriculum, school atmosphere, teaching methods, etc. The feedback from the students is intuitive information that can help in major decisions regarding education and student well-fare.

Educational institutes run surveys on the students periodically with the purpose of improving. Questions that are not biased but which benefit the academic field should compose the survey. Moreover, the survey must be dynamic, with questions targeting all the relevant sections.

The survey must ensure that students are able to provide an honest and individual opinion without any fear or confusion. Anonymous student survey is a way to ensure that students don’t feel afraid to put forth their honest opinion.

A student survey is meant to be useful for the teaching staff or administrators to understand the student’s opinions and issues.

NSS (National Student Survey) helps the universities in improving the academic experience of the students by informing them what the students think.

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Types of Student Survey

There are different survey types based on the need of the student and their opinion. You cannot mix different issues in a single survey because it will confuse the students. Therefore it is better to create relevant surveys that serve the purpose.

Satisfaction Survey

  1. How likely would you recommend this school/college to your family and friends to join?
  2.  Are you satisfied with your canteen service?
  3. Are you facing an issue understanding any class/course?

Such question types are a part of the student satisfaction survey. This type of survey is meant to gather feedback from students on how satisfied they are with the overall school’s performance. A student’s opinion can gauge how successful the school is within students.

This survey can contain multiple-choice or open-ended questions to motivate the students to give their review freely. Questions can range from the school infrastructure to the teaching and non-teaching staff and academic courses.

The survey is beneficial when conducted at regular intervals because it helps analyze the changes and the improvements. Moreover, the school can understand if the implemented changes were working or not. New strategies and development could be planned based on the latest report and its comparison with the previous survey.

open-ended question in a student survey
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Course Evaluation

  1.  How would you rank the lesson of this year from easiest to hardest?
  2.  What two things you think can improve classroom teaching?

The course a student has to focus on and the teaching method adopted by a teacher evaluated from a student’s perspective brings light to discomfort the only student faces. Made of specific questions focused on evaluating how comfortable the students feel with the course, this survey can lead to edification changes.

Open-ended questions will provide a detailed explanation but Likert-type questions and rating questions can also serve the purpose in some cases. In the case of asking questions about a specific class or teacher, you can use a Likert question.

      3.On a scale of 1 to 5 how well the study materials help with the course?

  1. Very clear
  2. Somewhat clear
  3. Neutral
  4. Unclear
  5. Very unclear
Question example in a student survey

Teacher Evaluation

  1.  Does your teacher respond to your doubts on their subject?
  2.  How well does your teacher react to you and your classmates’ suggestions?
  3.  Would you recommend this teacher to the junior classes?

Students evaluating their teachers based on teaching methods and attitude is important. A teacher evaluation can highlight the issue a student finds when dealing with the teachers, be it in the class with a lesson or out of class.

Student’s opinion on the teacher’s attitude is based on the teacher’s interaction with the students and the classroom activities. Students spend a quality amount of time with teachers and their feedback can reflect the professionalism or lack of on part of the teacher.

The survey can provide pointers on how to improve the teaching staff. Also, make the teachers aware of the student’s opinions on them which can lead to improvement in their behavior and teaching tactics.

Satisfcation question in a student survey
Gathering teacher feedback in a student survey

Environmental Survey

A student should be well aware of the environment along with their daily academic course. A student environmental survey examines how much students are informed about the environment. This also identifies if students are aware of how their activities affect the environment.

Based on the derived data the school can prepare activities and lessons to help students learn more about environmental issues. The survey can help the authority and the students understand how much they are concerned about the environment.

Student Harassment Survey

  1.  Have you or your friend faced bullying in this school?
  2.  How often do students report harassment?
  3.  Does the school respond and resolve the case of sexual harassment or bullying?
  4.  What do you think schools should do to decrease bullying in the future?

Students spending time among many students and staff for more than 5 hours a day can cause troubles like bullying and sexual harassment. Students may feel fear or shame to report such events directly to a teacher.

A student harassment survey can help the student report such an incident without any hesitation. The survey brings the attention of the authorities towards such issues. Moreover, it demonstrates how knowledgeable students are regarding bullying, sexual, or verbal harassment.

Anonymous surveys are the most useful when conducting the harassment survey. Students will feel peace of mind knowing their identity won’t be disclosed. Students are of a tender mentality and may fear threats, but an anonymous survey may give them the confidence to come forward in the future.

The school also needs to be more on alert when conducting the survey to prevent any influence. The survey allows the school to have full knowledge of the kind of assault or harassment taking place in school. This in the future can lead to the students reporting cases directly to the school and demanding justice.

Importance of Student Survey

Students if given the opportunity can bring into light many issues that the school may overlook. They have opinions regarding ways to improve their experience in school/universities. While this is enough reason to conduct a student survey there are a few more reasons that student surveys can be of importance.

Reveals problems

Students spend the most time around other students and surrounded by the academy. They are more aware of what goes on the inside of the student body. The student survey may reveal problems and issues otherwise hidden from the authority.

A student survey also informs the school about the challenges students face in a class. This can lead to schools developing programs and lessons to provide support to the students.

Solves Funding

Schools may suffer from budget problems which can lead to teacher layoffs and more students. This may also lead to cut off of courses like arts and sports and other under-developed courses.

The student’s opinion on what they find more important can be applied in structuring a proper plan for the school. The school can plan its budget and financial investments with the help of student’s opinions.

Promotion

A school’s reputation depends heavily on student’s perceptions. If the public hears negative comments about the school this may lead to fewer students in the future. However, a student survey can support the school in creating a positive reputation.

Student’s opinions about the safety of the school, professionalism of teachers, academic excellence, etc. can help promote the school and spread positive news about the school.

Conducting Student Survey

Decide the pattern and questionnaire

It is important to set a tone to the survey that is easy to follow and asks the relevant question. Teachers can be asked to design the survey based on their knowledge about the class they share a bond with. This can help design a survey specific for a class and the students.

Send the Surveys

Class teachers can be asked to hand over the handout of the survey, in case of a pen-paper survey, to each student of their class. The school or university can also be appointed to update the survey on the website and inform the students to participate. An email is also an option for conducting the survey.

Analyze the data

The teachers can be tasked to handle a particular class. They can analyze the feedback and opinions of the students and keep track. They can segment what the students are unhappy about, what their issues are, and what they like, to further develop a plan to solve any issue.

Action

Any survey is meaningless if no action is taken. After analyzing the reports it is important that the teachers and the school implement changes around the school and address the issues. The student’s insight should be used to improve the school performance and the well-fare of the students.

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