National Student Survey 2018: overall satisfaction results

The full results for UK universities ranked by student satisfaction in the 2018 National Student Survey (NSS)

July 27 2018
National Student Survey 2018

The University of St Andrews has moved up two places from last year to become the institution that UK university students are the most satisfied with, according to the 2018 National Student Survey

The University of Buckingham, Conservatoire for Dance and Drama and The London Institute of Banking & Finance take joint second place, while Keele University, Aberystwyth University and the Royal Veterinary College are in joint fourth place. 

More than 320,000 students across the UK took part in the survey this year. It is made up of 27 questions covering teaching on the course, learning opportunities, assessment and feedback, academic support, organisation and management, learning resources, learning community, student voice and student union. Students were also asked to give their university an overall satisfaction score. The table below shows how all the eligible UK higher education institutions performed on this measure (not including further education colleges and alternative higher education providers that don't have degree awarding powers). It shows the percentage of students who “definitely” or “mostly” agreed that they were satisfied with course quality.


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The London School of Economics and Politics was the lowest scoring high-profile university dropping three percentage points, from 74 per cent in 2017 to 71 per cent this year. Other prestigious universities in the bottom half of the table were Imperial College London, the University of Bristol and the University of Manchester

Some universities such as the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge do not feature in this year’s table. This is because in order to eligible at least 50 per cent of final-year undergraduates must complete the questionnaire. Students at these universities boycotted the survey in protest against the teaching excellence framework (TEF). You can find out more about the boycott here

However, some of the universities that took part in the boycott last year re-appeared this year including UCL and King’s College London


National Student Survey (NSS) 2018: overall student satisfaction results 

Rank University Overall course satisfaction (%)
1 University of St Andrews 94
=2 University of Buckingham 91
=2 Conservatoire for Dance and Drama 91
=2 The London Institute of Banking & Finance 91
=4 Keele University 90
=4 Royal Veterinary College 90
=4 Aberystwyth University 90
=7 Harper Adams University 89
=7 University of Lincoln 89
=7 Royal College of Music 89
=7 University of the West of England 89
=7 Swansea University 89
=12 Lancaster University 88
=12 University of Law  88
=12 University of Leeds 88
=12 Loughborough University 88
=12 Nottingham Trent University 88
=12 University of Portsmouth 88
=12 University of St Mark and St John 88
=12 St Mary's University, Twickenham 88
=12 University of Dundee 88
=12 University of Glasgow 88
=12 Bangor University 88
=23 Coventry University 87
=23 University of Essex 87
=23 University of Exeter 87
=23 Leeds Arts University 87
=23 Leeds Trinity University 87
=23 Liverpool Hope University 87
=23 The Open University 87
=23 Rose Bruford College 87
=23 Royal Holloway, University of London 87
=23 Royal Northern College of Music 87
=23 Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama 87
=23 Stranmillis University College 87
=23 Ulster University 87
=36 University of Bath 86
=36 University of Birmingham 86
=36 University of Chester 86
=36 De Montfort University 86
=36 University of Derby 86
=36 University of East Anglia 86
=36 University of Gloucestershire 86
=36 Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts 86
=36 Medway School of Pharmacy 86
=36 Newcastle University 86
=36 Regent's University London 86
=36 Sheffield Hallam University 86
=36 University of Worcester 86
=36 University of Aberdeen 86
=36 University of Wales Trinity Saint David 86
=51 Durham University 85
=51 Edge Hill University 85
=51 University of East London 85
=51 University of Kent 85
=51 Leeds Beckett University 85
=51 University of Liverpool 85
=51 University of Northumbria 85
=51 Oxford Brookes University 85
=51 Plymouth University 85
=51 University of Sheffield 85
=51 Staffordshire University 85
=51 University of Warwick 85
=51 University of York 85
=51 University of the Highlands and Islands 85
=51 Robert Gordon University 85
=51 University of the West of Scotland 85
=51 York St John University 85
=68 Anglia Ruskin University 84
=68 Aston University 84
=68 Birmingham City University 84
=68 University of Bolton 84
=68 University of Huddersfield 84
=68 Liverpool John Moores University 84
=68 University of Nottingham 84
=68 University of Salford 84
=68 University of Southampton 84
=68 University of Sunderland 84
=68 University of Surrey 84
=68 Teesside University 84
=68 University of Winchester 84
=68 University of Stirling 84
=68 University of Strathclyde 84
=83 University of Bedfordshire 83
=83 Birkbeck, University of London 83
=83 Bishop Grosseteste University 83
=83 University of Chichester 83
=83 University for the Creative Arts 83
=83 University of Hertfordshire 83
=83 University of Hull 83
=83 University of Manchester 83
=83 Newman University 83
=83 Norwich University of the Arts 83
=83 University of Reading 83
=83 Solent University 83
=83 University of Wolverhampton 83
=83 Queen's University of Belfast 83
=83 Cardiff Metropolitan University 83
=83 Cardiff University 83
=99 University of Bristol 82
=99 Bucks New University 82
=99 Canterbury Christ Church University 82
=99 City, University of London 82
=99 Imperial College London 82
=99 University of Leicester 82
=99 University of Northampton 82
=99 University of Roehampton 82
=99 Royal Agricultural University 82
=99 University of Sussex 82
=99 Queen Margaret University 82
=99 University of South Wales 82
=99 Arts University Bournemouth 81
=112 Bath Spa University 81
=112 Bournemouth University 81
=112 Guildhall School of Music and Drama 81
=112 Kingston University 81
=112 Manchester Metropolitan University 81
=112 Queen Mary University of London 81
=112 Glasgow Caledonian University 81
=112 Heriot-Watt University 81
=119 University College Birmingham 80
=119 University of Central Lancashire 80
=119 Falmouth University 80
=119 UCL 80
=119 Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance 80
=119 Writtle University College  80
=125 University of Greenwich 79
=125 King's College London 79
=125 London South Bank University 79
=125 Soas, University of London 79
=125 University of West London 79
=125 University of Abertay 79
=125 University of Bradford 78
=125 Goldsmiths, University of London 78
=125 Hull and Medical School 78
=125 London Metropolitan University 78
=125 Wrexham Glyndwr University 78
=136 University of Brighton 77
=136 Middlesex University 77
=136 St George's, University of London 77
=136 University of Edinburgh 77
=136 Plymouth College of Arts 77
=136 Royal Conservatoire of Scotland 77
=136 University of Cumbria 75
=136 University of Suffolk 75
=136 University of Westminster 75
145 Hertford Regional College 76
=146 BPP University College 74
=146 Edinburgh Napier University 74
=146 University College of Osteopathy 73
=149 Arden University 72
=149 University of the Arts London 72
=151 London School of Economics and Political Science 71
=151 Ravensbourne 71
=151 Royal Academy of Music 71
=154 Glasgow School of Art 67

Table note: this table does not include further education colleges and alternative higher education providers that don't have degree awarding powers

Read more: National Student Survey 2017: overall satisfaction results

Reader's comments (2)

I've observed this article experience 3 edits in the hope that it would reflect the NSS results with greater accuracy, but it's still inaccurate. It currently states that the table doesn't include Alternative Providers, but the University of Buckingham, Regents University, etc. are Alternative Providers and included in the list. However, other Alternative Providers are not included and some of them scored in the top 15 in the table as it currently stands.
"not including ... alternative higher education providers that don't have degree awarding powers." A brief look at the top few shows that the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama is an AP without degree awarding powers. Should other HEIs who received equally high NSS results but are APs without DAPs not be included too?

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