University of Sussex Students' Newspaper

NSS yes: Engineering students brush off boycott

Jessica Hubbard

ByJessica Hubbard

Mar 1, 2017

Engineering students have chosen not to boycott the National Student Survey (NSS), a University spokesperson confirmed.

The spokesperson said: “students within the Engineering department are choosing not to boycott the NSS. The students attended a Students’ Union Council meeting where they made this clear.”

This may be due to fear of potential withdrawal of funding and lower graduate prospects as a consequence of NSS Boycott.

George Pritchard, Electrical and Electronic Engineering student, said: “Yes there does seem to be quite a lot of hostility to the boycott, I haven’t had any contact with the department about it, not even emails.”

“However our student rep posted [on facebook] a big thing about how people shouldn’t support the boycott… when I asked if he’d actually spoken to any students to come to that view he wouldn’t reply.”

The move is at odds with the position of Sussex Students’ Union, who have encouraged students to boycott the NSS.

The survey is carried out by Ipsos Mori and asks students about their university experience.

According to the NSS website, the survey is aimed at primarily final- year undergraduates.

The survey includes 27 different questions which require the student to identify positive and negative aspects of their higher education institution.

The Students’ Union explained their position in various communications with students.

One of their main concerns is that universities may increase fees based on NSS results.

They believe that the NSS is being used against students rather than for their benefit.

This is because the NSS informs the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). The TEF assesses the quality of teaching in universities. According to the National Union of

According to the National Union of Students, 76% of students oppose the TEF and 87% of students are unaware that it’s being used to justify fee increases.

Vice Chancellor, Adam Tickell, has encouraged students to support the NSS over the past few months. The University also confirmed that it will join the TEF at a Council meeting on the 25th of November last year.

The University confirmed that it will join TEF at a Council meeting last year.

This is in spite of the fact that Sussex Students voted to boycott the NSS in a Students’ Union referendum during the last months of 2016.

Of the voters, 62% voted to boycott the NSS, 38% voted against the boycott and 102 students abstained from the referendum.

Students also voted for a boycott risk assessment to be carried out by the NUS.

However, the University is going ahead with the NSS and students have noted Sussex is providing incentives such as printing vouchers.

Jessica Hubbard

By Jessica Hubbard

Print Production Editor at The Badger. Third-year International Relations and International Development student. Time served at The Badger: since 2016. I like cooking, baking, and bringing cakes to Badger meetings!

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