Students give college glowing report as they vote it best in west
STUDENTS at South Devon College have voted it the best in the west.
The National Student Survey found that 91 per cent of final year students were satisfied with their course, making the college the leading institution in the South West and among the best in the country of all universities and colleges delivering university level courses — just one percentage point behind both Oxford and Cambridge universities.
The survey, conducted by the Higher Education Funding Council for England and IPOS Mori and supported by the National Union of Students, runs across all publicly funded higher education institutions in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, and the majority in Scotland.
The survey asks final year undergraduates to provide feedback on their courses in a nationally recognised format.
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Nationally the satisfaction rate is 85 per cent, with a response rate of 67 per cent compared to South Devon College's response rate of 84 per cent.
The college has achieved a satisfaction rate higher than the national rate in the key areas of academic support, teaching, assessment and feedback.
The college also received glowing results in specific subjects.
For all courses in academic studies in education, satisfaction with the college's course was an amazing 100 per cent, with a response rate of 96 per cent of students, placing the college top of all university providers in the country.
For drama, the college scored 96 per cent satisfaction, placing it in the top 10 nationally among all universities and colleges.
South Devon College principal Stephen Criddle said: "We are delighted to be recognised by our students for providing such exceptionally high levels of student support, placing us at the highest levels in the country.
"These results clearly underpin South Devon College's reputation as a leading regional university level course provider that has continued to increase student satisfaction whilst also increasing its student population and the range of courses on offer."
From this autumn, the results will be publicly available on each institution's website and on a new Unistats website allowing users can compare courses and institutions.
Richard Garrett, deputy president of the University of Plymouth Student Union, said: "The amazing level of satisfaction achieved at South Devon College demonstrates the importance they place on the student experience and why they are one of the leading institutions in the South West."
The results follow the success of the college's university provision in a student perception questionnaire 2012, conducted by Plymouth University across the university and all its college partners in the South West.
The college's first year university students were asked about the extent of their satisfaction with all aspects of their courses.
In this year's questionnaire, South Devon College gained a 94.7 per cent overall satisfaction, which placed it at the top of all colleges and the university in the Plymouth University partnership.
Mr Criddle added: "Students' expectations rightly are rising as more is paid for tuition fees, and at South Devon College we believe we offer one of the best value experiences for studying university level courses."
The results of the survey are available to prospective students and advisors to help make informed choices of where and what to study - log on to http://unistats.direct.gov.uk/