University Life forum: live blog
Yesterday saw the Guild Life forum at LGoS. This evening the University Life forum will take place with questions on whether students are consumers or partners in our education and how course reps can best improve education on campus.
Pro Vice Chancellor Professor Kelvin Everest will be speaking at the event from 5.30pm in the International Lounge at LGoS.
Elections for Student Council will also take place, so head along if you’re keen to stand to represent students.
Our live blog will start here at around 5.30pm if you can’t be there – let us know what you think of the questions in the comments!
That’s it for today’s University Life forum!
Forums will return next Monday and Tuesday with Societies Life and Liverpool Life, 5.30pm in the International Lounge.
The four councilors for University Life are…
Forum are now voting for the University Life councillors…
The candidates are:
Council nominations are being taken for the University Life section of council…
Communication is a big issue – how can course reps communicate with students to get their views?
Students at forum are in agreement that there needs to be lots of publicity surrounding course reps, what the role actually entails and how to get involved.
They want to see plenty of training across the year and lots of information on what they need to do.
What would encourage you to be a course rep?
What training and resources should the Guild provide?
What issues are you experience in your Faculty? How could a course rep help you?
The nicest thing about an SSLC is to be able to give and receive constant feedback about both the department and students, which in turn feeds in to the student experience being the best it can be.
If the resources are available, and with time, better modules and tutorials are held depending on what students actually need and want to learn.
The Computer Science dept course reps are heavily tied in to module reviews and student surveys as they can often provide answers as to why particular questions were answered negatively.
Students won a common room within the department including laptop charging, lockers and kitchen facilities.
Charlie Brensinger, a Computer Science Course Rep, is now beginning to speak about his experience as a course representative.
Kelvin Everest thanks the audience and expresses his interest in returning to forums to discuss more university-student communication.
The approach to quality and standards has been completely changed in the wake of increased fees.
Students are now involved in the process of creation of new degrees.
An annual subject review will take place for every degree (both undergraduate and postgraduate) on campus, involving the course reps on those degrees.
Every 5 years, whole disciplinary areas will be reviewed by department. Modules, facilities, funding, staff and all other aspects will be reviewed and the team will now include a student.
We need more academic staff with a teaching qualification – in 40 years of teaching there has not been a suggestion of such a qualification.
These positions are awarded based on research rather than the ability to teach, but this skill must be developed.
How do we develop 1200 academic staff?
What form should student evaluation take?
What questions are relevant across campus?
Should we publish these results? Should lecturers have the chance to reply to them?
‘Voice’ covers particular issues raised by students and how they were tackled by the university.
The National Student Survey is a difficult measure of student satisfaction given the questions asked and their bias, but we have to agree what responses should be acted upon.
With this academic judgement it becomes less like a partnership and more about a sustained commitment to study.
The quality and standards side have to be reconciled to bring the student and university together.
The second issue is standards – how we measure that a student has achieved the required standard to be awarded a degree and go into the wider world with a particular set of knowledge e.g. the 10% of students studying Medicine here at Liverpool
This has to be driven by the student population – the university are in “listening, responsive mode”
If the quality of what a student gets is not quite right, that becomes the time when perhaps they should be demanding their money back or better value.
The concept of quality is now driven by the student perception of their experience – whether that’s good teaching, bad teaching, a good application process or difficulty upon arrival at the university
As Pro Vice Chancellor for Student Experience, Kelvin Everest covers all students including prospective and past students.
His view is that students are certainly not customers or consumers, and partnership is the nearest thing to the relationship we have to the university.
Kelvin Everest has taken to the floor to discuss the question “Are we partners in our learning?”
The democratic structure of the Guild:
4 forums – Guild Life, University Life, Societies Life and Liverpool Life – which elect 4 leaders to student council, who send policy to the Board of Trustees
The Board of Trustees is made up of the 4 SROs, 4 Student Trustees and 4 external trustees selected for their expertise
What the Guild have been up to so far this year…
Sam: extensive training for all staff and lots of students
Explaining the National Student Survey at lgos.org/nss
Working with architects on the refurbishment of the Guild
Sitting on committees and working on student led teaching awards
Maggie: leading on Demo 2012 and presenting to other students’ unions on what we’re up to
Selecting the five key charities and beginning work with them
Creating the Societies in Schools project and working on Arriva bus issues
Chi-Chi: meeting with societies and creating training
Working on internationalisation including several talks on the subject
Preparing for Black History Month
Tom: Worked on the International Peace Day event
Preparing to launch the ‘Make the most of I.T’ project with the university
Bike security on campus with police officers and potential free dental care
Course rep recruitment and training across faculties
Deputy President Tom Bee is just taking us through the purpose of forums: an update on what’s going on within the university and the Guild, holding the officers to account and discussing issues on campus
University Life forum is kicking off in the International Lounge!