HAPPY: UON students are more satisfied than their Sydney counterparts with the quality of their educational experience. Picture: Max Mason-HubersMOST University of Newcastle students are happy withtheir educational experience, with more than 80 per cent of students satisfied with the quality of their studies, according to the results of a new survey that aims to give students “clear eyes” about how their university is performing.
The results of thesurvey, which were released by the education department on Wednesday, show that UON ranks higher than all of the prestigious Group of Eight universities for quality of educational experience, with 82.5 per cent of Newcastle undergraduates satisfied, rating their experience as positive–which is slightly higher than the national average of 80 per cent.
The clear majority of postgraduate students (85.1 per cent) were also pleased withUON, a figure which again came in higher than the national average.
While UON students were more satisfied than their Sydney counterparts with the quality of their experience, comparable universities such as the University of New England (83.3 per cent) and University of Wollongong (82.9 per cent) had higher ratings in that field.
Private institutions such as the University of Notre Dame (89.8 per cent) and Bond University (90.2 per cent) had the most satisfied students in the country.
UON Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) Professor John Germov welcomed the university’s results and said it was a reflection of the “hard work” of staff.
The university also ranked in the top quartile for teaching quality and above the sector average in learning resources, student support and skills development.
“This reflects the hard work of our academic and professional staff to provide the best possible education experience to all our students on campus and online, and inside and outside the classroom,” Professor Germov said.
The only category where UON failed to achieve the national average was in “learner engagement”, which the government said included the frequency of online or face-to-face learning and whether students felt “a sense of belonging” at the institution.
About 59 per cent of UON students responded to being satisfied with learner engagement. The national average was 63 per cent.
The university’s rehabilitation students were most satisfied with the quality of their educational experience, with 91.5 per cent rating the experience as positive. Nursing and dentistry students were at the bottom end, with 70 per cent identifying their experience as positive.
Education Minister Simon Birmingham said the survey was designed to give students “clear eyes”, and would increase accountability in the higher education sector.