National Student Survey feedback makes a difference

Published: 23 January 2018

An initiative to highlight the ways in which student feedback has informed new improvements in the Business School has launched

National Student Survey 2018

A system for the School to return exam answers to all students to review and request more feedback, and a 38 per cent reduction in the average class size, are some of the improvements put in place in response to requests from students in previous National Student Surveys (NSS).

The new 2018 NSS asks final year undergraduates to provide feedback on their courses and key aspects of the student experience such as assessment and feedback, learning opportunities, academic support and the student voice.

For every survey completed, the Business School will contribute £10 towards the graduation ball fund.

Professor John Finch, Head of the Adam Smith Business School said: “This month until the end of April, you can expect to see the National Student Survey advertised at various locations on campus and on our social media channels. The findings, which are widely publicised, are an invaluable source of intelligence for the School in terms of improving our courses and the student experience. I encourage as many final year undergraduates to participate as possible.”

NSS has invited all final year students to complete the survey online at The Student Survey

What you said and our response


You said… you wanted better feedback on your assessment

In response... we have engaged an internationally renowned research professor, specialising in assessment and feedback, to lead a Teaching Excellence Project.  

  • Economics has been experimenting with two-stage exams.
  • Accounting and Finance has introduced peer-review to some assessments. Our External Examiners have noted that the quality of feedback is improving across the School.
  • We have introduced new systems which enable us to return exam answers to all students so that you can review these and request more feedback if necessary. We are the only School in the University to do this at present.
  • Our new systems enable us to return all assignment feedback online and we encourage students to request further feedback if required.

You said... you would like smaller class sizes in Honours   

In response… Across the School we have made a huge effort to reduce class sizes by increasing the number of Honours courses. The average class size has been reduced from 61 in 2015 to 38 in 2017.

You said… you needed better support to transition back to the Business School following time studying abroad   

In response… In 2016 we created a bespoke re-induction event for students who had studied abroad during their Junior Honours year.

You said… you wanted easier and better access to academic staff   

In response… All staff now provide office hours or appointments for consultation and feedback.

You said… you wanted guest lecturers   

In response… We are making more frequent and better use of guest lecturers, often bringing back our alumni, who work in positions across the world, to enhance our courses and make them more relevant to the real world.

You said… you would like support to organise conferences   

In response… We have supported the organisation of four annual student-led Economics conferences, the Glasgow Economics Forum.

You said... you would like help to organise a TED-x event   

In response... The School partnered with TEDx to deliver a major event in 2017, attracting 667 applications to a ballot for 200 tickets. 2018 will be a bigger and better event with more than 300 delegates.

You said... you wanted more support to enter business case competitions   

In response…
•    We supported four Business School teams to compete in global case competitions last year including a team who won the Global Student Challenge in the Netherlands.
•    The School helped fund an annual Internal Case Competition involving students, alumni and employers.

You said… you wanted the school to improve its student induction    

In response… A new welcome event for first year Economics and Management students was successfully piloted in 2017.

You said… you wanted to be better prepared for the job market   

In response…The School funded 163 places on the ILM-accredited Professional Skills Programme, which has gone from strength to strength in 2016/17. The Programme (formerly GPMP) celebrates its sixth anniversary in 2018.

You said… you wanted better support when experiencing difficult times   

In response… We were the second School to launch a Peer Support Scheme. It is delivered by our own students, who undertake comprehensive training with the Counselling and Psychological Service.

You said... you would like more opportunities for an international experience   

In response…
•    We have continued to develop new exchange partnerships to increase the number of places available for study abroad.
•    We now fund summer school participation to provide alternatives to study abroad.

Accounting and Finance

You said… you wanted a more relevant Economics course

In response… From September 2017, students now study a 20-credit Economics course designed specifically to meet the needs of the Accounting and Finance curriculum, BAcc and BSc.

You said… you wanted more timely feedback

In response... Grades and feedback were returned early or on time for 93% of assignments and in-course exams in 2016/17.


You said... you wanted more timely feedback

In response… Grades and feedback were returned early or on time for 90% of assignments and in-course exams in 2016/17.

You said… you would like better dissertation support

In response… Economics introduced the Dissertation Fair in 2016 to support students in this process more effectively. This was followed by interim evaluations in 2017 so we can respond to issues more quickly.

You said… you would like to improve your graduate skills

In response... We introduced a range of skills workshops in 2017, aimed to increase students’ readiness for the job market and postgraduate study.


You said… the Business and Management degree should be more relevant and up-to-date

In response…
• We are rolling out a new curriculum from September 2018, which has been benchmarked against other leading universities.
• Current students will benefit from a new level 3 curriculum and a range of new and redesigned Honours optional courses.
• We have introduced more experiential learning courses.

You said…you wanted more Honours tutorials

In response… So far, we have introduced tutorials in two of the three courses that are compulsory for Single Honours students.

Enquiries: / 0141 330 5463

First published: 23 January 2018

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