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Research into the National Student Survey is a central part of its development. 

Most recently the UK funding bodies have published two pieces of research to review the NSS. These consider its purposes, value to the sector and validity as a survey tool. 

The research found that the sector values the survey and sees it as valid, but that it requires updating to reflect long-term developments in HE. 

The research recommended retaining the strengths of the survey while addressing identified weaknesses. Read the funding bodies’ response to the research. 

HEFCE analysis 

HEFCE has also analysed the data from the first nine years of the survey. This identified differences in satisfaction by some student characteristics, including by discipline.  

It also showed that ‘yea saying’ (answering the survey with the same answer throughout) was at a higher rate than expected, but that it does not currently impact on the overall trends of the results. 

Read the reports

HEFCE has also made available a data analysis tool which allows users to explore the national level data by characteristic, question and year.

Other analysis

Analysis of students excluded from the National Student Survey (2015)

Download the Analysis of students excluded from the National Student Survey as PDF (133 KB) 

Download the Analysis of students excluded from the National Student Survey as MS Word (76 KB)

Download the Annex A: NSS excluded students breakdown as MS Excel Spreadsheet (25 KB)

More information is available in 'Consultation on changes to the National Student Survey, Unistats and information provided by institutions' (HEFCE 2015/24).

Earlier research

Research has been undertaken throughout the lifetime of the survey.  This has guided its development and led to the full review which began in 2013.

Links to the full publications can be found below.

Page last updated 4 February 2015