28 Aug 2022
Students at the University of the Sunshine Coast have reported some of the country’s highest satisfaction levels – rating it the best public university in Queensland, and among the nation's top two.
Among public universities, UniSC placed in the country's top two, and the best in Queensland, for satisfaction in the Student Experience Survey from 2020 and 2021, which have now been published on the Quality Indicators for Teaching and Learning (QILT) website.
UniSC Vice Chancellor and President Professor Helen Bartlett said the “tremendous” results reflected UniSC’s vibrant campus life across five campuses from Fraser Coast to Moreton Bay, and approach to creating opportunity for students from diverse backgrounds.
“Students at UniSC reported overall ‘quality of educational experience’ rates eight percent higher than the national average,” Professor Bartlett said.
“We also outshone the national average across all categories including skills development, learner engagement, teaching quality, student support and learning resources.”
She said the results highlighted the strength of UniSC support programs to ensure equal access to university, including students who were the first in their family to study, people with disabilities, Indigenous Australians as well as people from non-English speaking or disadvantaged backgrounds, or from rural and isolated areas.
“The opportunities of the future should be available to everyone,” Professor Bartlett said.
“As a key driver of opportunity in our regions, UniSC plays a critical role in opening the doors wider and ensuring people from all communities can harness those opportunities for their own future, in turn boosting the wellbeing of their communities and the economic strength of the country.”
UniSC also ranked fourth nationally and posted among Queensland’s top-two universities for all universities.
Bailey Wemyss, who co-chairs the UniSC Disability and Inclusion Student Group, said the university’s progress towards universal design was a key step to ensuring equity.
“A lot of people aren’t aware of the substantial help that can be available. If you need any help, from filling out your initial forms, through to other accommodations, if you ask, there will be someone to help you,” said Bailey.
“Students with a disability are a part of the student community and we deserve the same access as everyone else and UniSC is listening to the students and working towards ensuring that access for everyone.”
Bachelor of Design student Jess Lowe said she was surprised to be offered jobs through industry contacts she had made during her course.
“I’m not even halfway through my course and I’m already doing freelance stuff, which is something I hadn’t expected,” she said.
“I think the campus is great too, it feels homely, but the online learning materials mean you can have a part time job and you don’t have to be here at 2pm, so there’s a lot of flexibility.”
“There are always people making sure you are on the right track, the lecturers have all been really lovely and approachable. The staff and the resources are great,” she said.
Professor Bartlett said the results were a reminder that the university was on a strong positive trajectory as the Government announced 20,000 extra places at rural and regional universities to meet equity targets.
“We are looking forward to working with the government to secure a share of the additional places, particularly in the Moreton Bay region where our university participation rates are also outshining the national trends,” Professor Bartlett said.
“It is a priority for us to continually expand our accessibility via technology as part of our teaching and learning model, which allows a blend of on-campus and online learning, depending on what works best for the student.
“We actively engage students as partners to continuously improve, and we think that responding to their feedback has been vital to ensure that we are delivering what our students are asking for.”