Education and student experience
Education unlocks potential and transforms lives. That’s why we are committed to teaching of the very highest quality and a student experience that stays with our graduates for a lifetime. By putting our students at the heart of the University, we unlock their potential and prepare them to shape the future.
Ensuring that our students receive an outstanding research-engaged educational experience has always been and will continue to be the focus of our efforts. They must be prepared and equipped to shape that world for the better: that is at the core of our commitment to teaching excellence.
A Nottingham education and experience is shaped by:
- a wide range of courses with superb potential for combining different subjects to foster interdisciplinary learning and understanding;
- a unique international dimension, with a large international student and staff community;
- our outstanding parkland campuses in the UK, Malaysia and China.
Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) Gold
'The provider achieves consistently outstanding outcomes for its students from all backgrounds, in particular with regards to retention and progression to highly skilled employment and further study.”
Our Gold award in the first Teaching Excellence Framework (2017) underlined the benefits for our students of studying at a large teaching-focused and research-intensive university.
At an institutional level, the award is a resounding endorsement of one of the University’s core strategies: providing excellence in education and the student experience. Systematic delivery in this area has been achieved through the University’s Transforming Teaching Programme (TTP), commended by the UK Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) which stated that it '...has a central role and is particularly effective in enhancing the student learning experience.”
The quality of education offered at Nottingham was also reflected in an extremely positive QAA Higher Education Review report published in 2016 in which the QAA review team identified a range of good practice at the University across the student experience, teaching and learning, employability and student engagement.
Transforming teaching and learning
The University’s TTP places an emphasis on developing our teaching to integrate technology-based learning activities that allow for more effective interaction with students in contact time. Such activities also make inter-campus teaching more connected. TTP provides a direct means for students to give feedback on and improve provision via the Students as Change Agents (SACA) initiative. This engages students in the design and delivery of school-based projects that are evidence-informed and planned for lasting impact.
Moodle, our Virtual Learning Environment, currently has nearly 1.5m individual learning resources. We offer a number of MOOCS through FutureLearn and, in addition, Nottingham Open Online Courses (NOOCs) act as a catalyst for teaching innovation in schools in the areas of online and blended learning, feedback, assessment and academic development. NOOCs contribute directly to TTP and are powerful drivers for innovation, providing learning environments that are dynamic, engaging, internationally-oriented and technology-rich.
All campuses offer state-of-the-art library facilities, language courses and the best in IT, as well as support services through newly revamped Student Service Centres, the International Office, and the Student Advice Centre in the Students’ Union. Students at Nottingham also benefit from the international character of the University and the opportunities to undertake part of their studies abroad, broadening their knowledge and experience.
A multi-million pound investment in student services across the UK, China and Malaysia campuses marks the beginning of a journey towards continuous improvement and student excellence, by transforming the way that the University delivers certain services. The introduction of new software and student service centres has brought a marked improvement in the facilities available at the University today. However, we will continue to ensure that we build upon the new model and continue to improve services and systems in line with the needs of our students.
The size and quality of the University’s research activity provides a teaching and learning environment for students that draws on the latest discoveries and scholarship across our full range of subjects, while providing access to state-of-the-art facilities to ensure teaching is research-led and research-engaged. Our research philosophy underpins our interactions with students, producing graduates who are capable of independent thinking and have a critical approach to their work and the world around them.
In an increasingly competitive environment it is vital to further build and enhance the University’s reputation and profile to support the achievement of student recruitment targets (both quality of intake and quantity). The University remains a highly popular institution but the challenging external environment and changing student behaviours require all universities to focus on student recruitment to protect their market position. The University has ambitious plans to grow international student numbers and strengthen the quality of the overall intake – particularly from the UK.