National Student Survey

Running since 2005, the National Student Survey (NSS) is your chance to have your say about what you liked and didn’t like about your experiences during your time at University.

USW Student Charter Information on this webpage forms part of our commitment in our Student Charter

What is the NSS?


The NSS is a nationally recognised annual survey of mostly final year undergraduates in the UK. The survey provides students with an opportunity to give their opinions on what they liked about their time at University as well as things that they felt could have been improved.

The survey is administered by Ipsos MORI, an independent market research agency, so answers remain anonymous at all times.

Why should I take part?

  • You can give honest feedback on your learning experience
  • Your feedback will be used to improve the learning experience at the University
  • The results are taken very seriously and inform the quality assurance system with regards to teaching quality
  • Results are used by prospective students to make decisions on what and where to study

This Year (2017), these are prizes you can win:

  1. If you complete the survey before 28th February, you will be entitled to a free hot drink. Vouchers are available from the Advice Zones on each campus.
  2. If you complete the survey at any point, you’ll be entered into a prize draw to win one of four £250 Amazon vouchers. The winners will be selected by Ipsos Mori and they will be informed if they have won by the end of April 2017.
  3. NEW for 2017: the University will pay the Students’ Union to organise a celebration event for students of the Schools…
    • with the highest percentage response rate by the 28th February
    • with the highest percentage response rate by the 30th April

What happens with the results?

The NSS results are published to help prospective students make informed decisions of where and what to study. The University and the Students’ Union also use the data to identify areas of strengths and weaknesses. This enables the University to focus our efforts to improve the student experience for future generations of students.

Data from previous surveys is available on Unistats.

The University has been participating in the NSS since its introduction and as a result of listening to what former students had to say, have made many changes.

If you want examples of how NSS results have brought about changes, visit our Listening to You page to see examples of things we have done as a result of feedback from you.

How do I complete it?

Do not attempt to complete the survey before receiving an invitation email! Your details will not be in the system and you will not be able to complete the survey

Near the start of the calendar year, eligible students are sent an invitation email to complete the survey by Ipsos MORI. Later, non-respondents will be contacted by post or ultimately by telephone. You can find out more about the NSS online at

There’s usually an incentive to take part in the survey: in 2017, the cohort(s) with the highest completion rate will win a prize.

Data protection

Your response is anonymous, so your answers can reflect your genuine perceptions of your experience. There’s no need to worry about your contact details being passed on; they will only be used for the purposes of the NSS and are destroyed shortly after.

Proposed boycott of the National Student Survey

The motion proposing the boycott was passed at NUS National Conference, but isn’t supported by NUS Wales. NUS Wales isn’t supporting the boycott, and has taken a different position to that of NUS UK, whereby they are focusing on lobbying the Assembly to keep fees and quality from being linked. We have not had any indication from students that they agree with the NUS position, or that they wish to support it, therefore we will not be encouraging students to boycott the NSS this year.

Sian Taylor, Chief Executive Officer / Jonny Jones, President of the SU