Toronto, July 27, 2009– The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) today released a new research paper, Exploring the Utility of the 2007 Canadian Graduate and Professional Student Survey: Student Satisfaction at the University of Western Ontario.
Prepared by Dr. Nicholas Spence for HEQCO, this report analyses the results of the 2007 Canadian Graduate and Professional Student Survey of 1,354 University of Western Ontario students. Information was collected on a wide range of issues, including:
- general satisfaction with the university, advisors, and field of study;
- satisfaction with the program, quality of interactions and coursework;
- professional skills development and research experience; and
- university resources and student life.
“Monitoring and evaluating graduate level education is a significant initiative led by the universities,” said Dr. Ken Norrie, vice-president of research for the Council. “This survey is an important indicator of the quality of graduate programs and is a good tool to help universities improve the learning experience.”
Key findings from the report suggest that:
- The role of the advisor is significant in promoting and maintaining student satisfaction;
- The amount of coursework, overall quality of teaching and availability of courses are important drivers for satisfaction;
- Advice and workshops on career opportunities within academia are indispensable (although advice and workshop for career opportunities outside academia appeared of lesser importance);
- Students place higher value on library services than other university resources such as health and regestrarial services; and
- Degree type had some effect on student satisfaction whereas debt load, work and financial commitments, graduate division, year of study, sex, publication record and funding for conferences appeared to have little effect.
About the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario
The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario is an arm’s-length agency of the Government of Ontario dedicated to ensuring the continued improvement of the postsecondary education system. The Council was created through the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario Act, 2005. It is mandated to conduct research, evaluate the postsecondary education system, and provide policy recommendations to the Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities with a view to enhance the quality, access, and accountability of Ontario’s higher education system.
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