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The University of Sussex has shown big improvement in two recent polls.

In the National Student Survey (NSS), published on 11 September, the score for overall satisfaction rose from 78% in 2007 to 86% this year. The NSS questions final-year undergraduates on a number of academic criteria including teaching, learning resources and academic support.

The questions on teaching achieved the highest overall score with 88% of students giving positive results whereas assessment and feedback fared less well with 61% positive results. Only 55% of students said that they had received detailed comments on their work and less than half believed that feedback had helped them clarify things that they didn’t understand.

The results as a whole show improvement on last year’s scores with a higher mark for each of the 22 questions. Sussex also came top in the rankings out of all the elite 1994 and Russell Group Institutions.
University of Sussex Student Union (USSU) president Laura Tazzioli comments:

“I am glad that we have gone up the NSS rankings. However, it is important to remember that the NSS is no more than a general survey that goes out to all finalist students in the country. What we should really be doing is looking at Sussex-specific ways of measuring how happy students are in their particular course, rather than just falling in line with the national trend.”

The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) commissions the online survey every year as a means of obtaining honest student feedback about their university experience. For a more detailed breakdown of results please visit

In other recent rankings the University of Sussex has climbed eight places since last year to claim 22nd position in The Sunday Times University Guide, making it the highest climber in the top 30.

The Sunday Times Guide, which describes itself as the ‘definitive guide for prospective students’, bases its information on a variety of factors, including the NSS scores, research quality and graduate employment rates to compile its top 100 list.

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