Student voices: What students think about college life

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When it comes to college life, an important voice is often a bit under-appreciated – that of the student.

The Irish Survey of Student Engagement is a pilot national survey that aims to give students their say on what college life in Ireland is like.

Almost 13,000 students responded to the survey, which was conducted back in April of this year. So what did they have to say?


According to the survey, most students viewed higher education in Ireland in a positive light: 84 per cent were happy enough with their chosen institution that they would choose it again if they started over; 72 per cent of students said that they had a positive relationship with teaching staff, finding them to be available, helpful and sympathetic. Student-to-student relationships were also viewed positively, with 82 per cent of students surveyed finding other students to be friendly, supportive and having a sense of belonging.

Real-world application

However, the scores were somewhat lower when students were questioned about issues such as employability. Sixty per cent of participating students selected quite a bit or very much when asked if they were acquiring job-related or work-related knowledge and skills. Only 50 per cent of all participating students selected quite a bit or very much when asked if they were solving complex real-world problems.

Overall experience

While a portion of students seemed uncertain over whether their respective courses were preparing them for the working world, the overall higher education experience achieved an impressively high rating, with 79 per cent of respondents selecting good or excellent when asked to evaluate their entire educational experience.

To read a summary report of the survey, click here.


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