28 Sep 2017

SPOTLIGHT ON.... Stirling University Students' Union and University of Stirling

This ‘SPOTLIGHT ON’ features the University of Stirling Students’ Union award-winning partnership project with the University of Stirling, to undertake an enhancement-driven review of their existing arrangements for Student Representation and Engagement within quality processes.

In early June 2016, the Students' Union convened a student representatives working group, which brought together both past and present course representatives and Faculty Officers, with key members of University academic and professional services staff.

The group made a number of recommendations which sought to both consolidate on assuring the impact of previous developments and charting out new courses of development for the 2016/17 academic year. In partnership with the University, the Students’ Union has worked to action and implement the findings of the group, with some of the biggest changes including:

  • Revamping and restructuring their online Course Representative Training Module, benchmarking content within the training to the Student Engagement Framework for Scotland.
  • Revamping the training provided through their Faculty Officer Academy.
  • Introducing end of Semester reports for Course Representatives to complete.
  • Developing guidance for staff on engaging with Student Representatives, to include specific information for module co-ordinators, administrative staff and chairs of Student-Staff Consultative Committee meetings.

By undertaking this review, it has allowed the Students’ Union to create a culture of student engagement across the institution and foster a clearer sense of continuous improvement. The review process also highlighted a number of new questions in relation to their support for student reps on transnational and research-focused programmes, an area that the Students’ Union and University are planning more work on.

The Students’ Union feels the enhancement-driven review opened up an invaluable dialogue with academic and professional services staff within the University around student representation, cementing this as a joint commitment to partnership working between the University and Students' Union. This commitment has since been integrated within their new Student Partnership Agreement, which will cover 2017-2019.

At the sparqs Student Engagement Awards in March 2017, the Students’ Union was awarded winner in the category ‘An initiative led by a students’ association in partnership with their university which has made the most impact on the enhancement of the student experience.’ View the award category webpage to read more and see them collecting their award!

For further information about this work, please contact Matt Adie, VP Education, at education.union@stir.ac.uk and take a look at their website at www.stirlingstudentsunion.com to find out more about their representative structures.

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